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The suspense of a novel is not only in the reader, but in the novelist, who is intensely curious about what will happen to the hero.
It's like a novelist writing far out things. If it makes a point and makes sense, then people like to read that. But if it's off in left field and goes over the edge, you lose it. The same with musical talent, I think.
There ought to be more grants that go to people in their late twenties and early thirties. That's a crucial age, although it's very hard to judge who is worth supporting and who is not. Looking back on my own life, I see that was the period when I was closest to giving up as a novelist and when I most needed some encouragement.
A novelist who writes nothing for 10 years finds his reputation rising. Because I keep on producing books they say there must be something wrong with this fellow.
J. B. Priestley
Manners are of such great consequence to the novelist that any kind will do. Bad manners are better than no manners at all, and because we are losing our customary manners, we are probably overly conscious of them; this seems to be a condition that produces writers.
The artist deals in what cannot be said in words. The artist whose medium is fiction does this in words. The novelist says in words what cannot be said in words.
Ursula K. Le Guin
The art of the novelist is not unrelated to the illness of multiple personality disorder. It's a much milder form. But the better the book, the nearer to the padded cell you are.
A house with any kind of age will have dozens of stories to tell. I suppose if a novelist could live long enough, one could base an entire oeuvre on the lives that weave in and out of an antique house.
Not until my middle thirties did I consider myself a novelist.
Rita Mae Brown
In journalism just one fact that is false prejudices the entire work. In contrast, in fiction one single fact that is true gives legitimacy to the entire work. That's the only difference, and it lies in the commitment of the writer. A novelist can do anything he wants so long as he makes people believe in it.
Gabriel Garcia Marquez
If a person is not talented enough to be a novelist, not smart enough to be a lawyer, and his hands are too shaky to perform operations, he becomes a journalist.
I've always liked the idea that writing is a form of travel. And I started my writing career as a mystery novelist for adults.
Mark Twain was a great traveler and he wrote three or four great travel books. I wouldn't say that I'm a travel novelist but rather a novelist who travels - and who uses travel as a background for finding stories of places.
To sing a song is quite different than to write a poem. I'm not and never will be a novelist, but to write a novel is not the same thing as writing a play. There is a difference in form, but essentially what you're after is the same thing.
The historian will tell you what happened. The novelist will tell you what it felt like.
E. L. Doctorow
A filmmaker has almost the same freedom as a novelist has when he buys himself some paper.
I am a fictionalizing philosopher, not a novelist.
Philip K. Dick
That balance between involvement and detachment is what novelists do. It's the ideal relationship between a novelist and a character, I think, total involvement and identity and empathy, stopping short of being autobiographical - in my case, anyway - but also quite detached.
The contemporary American novelist benefits in a way from being ignored. It makes you angrier and makes you want to go into all of those places where you shouldn't.
A novelist can get by on story, but the poet has nothing but the words.
I'm a big, bombastic novelist and thrill-ride guy. I'm never going to win the National Book Award.
Historian: an unsuccessful novelist.
H. L. Mencken
As a novelist, I ask of myself only that I tell the truth and that I tell it beautifully.
One's politics are part of one even when one is writing. But if I want to say anything about the state of civil society, I will write an essay. The responsibilities you feel as a novelist are literary ones, I think, not civic ones. And I think politicians are interesting to write about.
The materials of the novelist must be real; they must be gathered from the field of humanity by his actual observation.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
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The best way out is always through.
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