John Keats (b. October 31): “My imagination is a monastery…”

31 Oct


“My imagination is a monastery and I am its monk.”

~ John Keats, b. 31 October 1795


Timothy Findley (b. October 30): “Art was meant to be dangerous.”

30 Oct

“Literature was intended to be dangerous. Art was meant to be dangerous. Ideas were nothing if they were not dangerous.”

“The writer cannot see the mass, as such, because the writer never looks to see the mass. The writer looks to see the parts, and the writer looks at every part and every person, each of them alone.”

Timothy Findley (born 30 October 1930, died 21 June 2002) was a Canadian novelist and playwright. He wrote 10 novels, a memoir, three collections of short stories, plays, and screenplays including the 1981 movie version of The Wars. He received numerous awards including the Officer of the Order of Canada.


Ezra Pound (b. October 30): “We should read for power.”

30 Oct


“Properly, we should read for power. Man reading should be man intensely alive. The book should be a ball of light in one’s hand.”

~ Ezra Pound, b. 30 October 1885


Lee Child (b. October 29): “Writing is show business for shy people” & other quotes

29 Oct

Lee Child, born 29 October 1954, is a British thriller writer best known for his Jack Reacher novels.

10 quotes on writing:

  1. Don’t get it right – get it written.
  2. Writing is show business for shy people.
  3. It’s a kind of Zen question: if you write a book and no one reads it, is it really a book?
  4. The way to write a thriller is to ask a question at the beginning, and answer it at the end.
  5. Read, read, read. You can’t get anywhere unless you’re an obsessive, continuous reader of other stuff.
  6. Writers become writers because they love words and language, and attempting a non-native style is all part of the fun.
  7. I have the ‘thing’ worked out – the trick or the surprise or the pivotal fact. Then I just start somewhere and let the story work itself out.
  8. Male authors always take care to make their heroes at least one inch taller than they are, and considerably more muscular. Just as female authors give their heroines better hair and slimmer thighs.
  9. I write in the afternoon, from about 12 until 6 or 7. I use an upstairs room as my office. Once I get going I keep at it, and it usually takes about six months from the first blank screen until ‘The End’.
  10. So, how to stay inside the world of entertainment without actually getting another job? I felt the only logical answer was to become a novelist. So I wrote the first book – driven by some very real feelings of desperation – and it worked.

I think my wife is dead…

29 Oct


 eCard by Alan Annand, writer and astrologer


Evelyn Waugh (b. October 28): “An artist must be a reactionary” & other quotes on writing

28 Oct

waughEvelyn Waugh (born 28 October 1903, died 10 April 1966) was an English author, born into a family of publishers and writers. Waugh’s first book, A Life of Dante Gabriel Rossetti, was published in 1928. Soon afterwards his first novel, Decline and Fall, appeared and his career was sensationally launched. Evelyn Waugh wrote 15 novels and several acclaimed travel books, two additional biographies, and an autobiography, A Little Learning

Quotes on writing:

  1. I put words down and push them around a bit.
  2. There are no poetic ideas, only poetic utterances.
  3. Some people think in pictures, some in ideas. I think entirely in words. 
  4. One forgets words as one forgets names. One’s vocabulary needs constant fertilising or it will die.
  5. An artist must be a reactionary. He has to stand out against the tenor of the age and not go flopping along.
  6. Only when one has lost all curiosity about the future has one reached the age to write an autobiography.
  7. Sometimes, I feel the past and the future pressing so hard on either side that there’s no room for the present at all.
  8. I should like to bury something precious in every place where I’ve been happy and then, when I’m old and ugly and miserable, I could come back and dig it up and remember.
  9. I used to have a rule when I reviewed books as a young man: never to give an unfavorable notice to a book I hadn’t read. I find even this simple rule is flagrantly broken now. 
  10. Don’t analyse yourself. Give the relevant facts and let your readers make their own judgements. Stick to your story. It is not the most important subject in history but it is one about which you are uniquely qualified to speak.

Julia Roberts (b. October 28): “The older you get, the more fragile you understand life to be.”

28 Oct


“The older you get, the more fragile you understand life to be. I think that’s good motivation for getting out of bed joyfully each day.”

~ Julia Roberts, b. 28 October 1967



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