Science fiction writers foresee the inevitable, and although problems and catastrophes may be inevitable, solutions are not.Isaac Asimov
Look I probably should have told you this before but you see… well… insanity runs in my family. It practically gallops.Mortimer Brewster (played by Cary Grant) in the film Arsenic and Old Lace
Hubris is interesting, because you get people who are often very clever, very powerful, have achieved great things, and then something goes wrong – they just don’t know when to stop.Margaret MacMillan
Hubris is one of the great renewable resources.P. J. O’Rourke
Each era has the fatal hubris to believe that it has once and for all climbed to the top of the mountain and can see everything as it is, from the highest and most objective vantage point possible.Eric Metaxas
We are not trying to entertain the critics. I’ll take my chances with the public.Walt Disney
A cynic is a man who, when he smells flowers, looks around for a coffin.H. L. Mencken
The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it.George Bernard Shaw
In this game of life your family is the court and the ball is your heart. No matter how good you are, no matter how down you get, always leave your heart on the court.Kwame Alexander
PG hasn’t read a John Grisham novel for at least several years. However, he started a new Grisham book, The Guardians, and immediately came upon a lovely first sentence:
Duke Russell is not guilty of the unspeakable crimes for which he was convicted; nonetheless, he is scheduled to be executed for them in one hour and forty-four minutes.John Grisham
One cannot rule out a blizzard in Minnesota after Labor Day, and so when I travel for Thanksgiving or any time in the fall, I am careful to fly into Des Moines instead of Minneapolis and then drive the 200 miles north to my hometown.
I have been up against tough competition all my life. I wouldn’t know how to get along without it.
The taxpayer – that’s someone who works for the federal government but doesn’t have to take the civil service examination.
There is always the danger that we may just do the work for the sake of the work. This is where the respect and the love and the devotion come in – that we do it to God, to Christ, and that’s why we try to do it as beautifully as possible.
I’d like to dial it back 5% or 10% and try to have a vacation that’s not just e-mail with a view.
No work is insignificant. All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
A hundred times every day, I remind myself that my inner and outer life depend on the labors of other men, living and dead, and that I must exert myself in order to give in the same measure as I have received and am still receiving.
One of the pieces I’m deeply proud to have written started with a paragraph that read: “This story needed an ending before it could find its first sentence. So please forgive me for delivering it ten years overdue.” That ten years was a war with writer’s block.Cal Fussman
An author who gives a manager or publisher any rights in his work except those immediately and specifically required for its publication or performance is for business purposes an imbecile.George Bernard Shaw
Slanderers are a species of creatures, so great a scandal to human nature, as scarce to deserve the name of men. They are, for the generality, a composition of the most detestable vices, price, envy, lying, hatred, uncharitableness, etc… And yet it is a lamentable truth that these wretches swarm in every town, and lurk in every village; and, actuated by these base principles, are ever busied in attacking the characters of mankind; none are too good or too great to escape the level of their envenomed dart; nor does the inefficacy of their malicious intentions in the least deter them from persevering in their villainy.Wellins Calcott
Your tittle-tattlers, and those who listen to slander, by my good will should all be hanged — the former by their tongues, the latter by the ears.Plautus
An hypocrite with his mouth destroyeth his neighbour: but through knowledge shall the just be delivered.Proverbs 11:9
Slander is worse than cannibalism.John Chrysostom
Just because something isn’t a lie does not mean that it isn’t deceptive. A liar knows that he is a liar, but one who speaks mere portions of truth in order to deceive is a craftsman of destruction.Criss Jami
You can’t just slander someone, defame them, lie about them. You can’t incite people to crime. There’s all sorts of reasonable restrictions on free speech that are already codified in the British common-law system.Jordan Peterson
There was reason to believe the battle for Iwo Jima would be even more ferocious than the others, reason to expect the Japanese defender would fight even more tenaciously.
In Japanese eyes the Sulfur Island was infinitely more precious than Tarawa, Guam, Tinian, Saipan, and the others. To the Japanese, Iwo Jima represented something more elemental: It was Japanese homeland. Sacred ground. In Shinto tradition, the island was part of the creation that burst forth from Mount Fuji at the dawn of history…. the island was part of a seamless sacred realm that had not been desecrated by an invader’s foot for four thousand years.
Easy Company and the other Marines would be attempting nothing less than the invasion of Japan.James Bradley, Flags of Our Fathers: Heroes of Iwo Jima
The fruits of victory are tumbling into our mouths too quickly.Emperor Hirohito, April 29, 1942
The Americans only know how to make razor blades.Hermann Göring
Field Marshall Erwin Rommel
We could do with some of those razor blades, Herr Reichsmarshall.
Look around the table. If you don’t see a sucker, get up, because you’re the sucker.Amarillo Slim
The older I grow the more I distrust the familiar doctrine that age brings wisdom.H. L. Mencken
I always wanted to get into politics, but I was never light enough to make the team.Art Buchwald
I pretended to be somebody I wanted to be until finally I became that person. Or he became me.Cary Grant
One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors.Plato
Everyone wants to be Cary Grant. Even I want to be Cary Grant.Cary Grant
Sometimes, I’m brave. Sometimes, I’m just stubborn.Nigia Stephens
It’s a dialogue, not a monologue, and some people don’t understand that. Social media is more like a telephone than a television.Amy Jo Martin
Communism is not love. Communism is a hammer which we use to crush the enemy.Mao Zedong
You swallow hard when you discover that the old coffee shop is now a chain pharmacy, that the place where you first kissed so-and-so is now a discount electronics retailer, that where you bought this very jacket is now rubble behind a blue plywood fence and a future office building. Damage has been done to your city. You say, ”It happened overnight.” But of course it didn’t. Your pizza parlor, his shoeshine stand, her hat store: when they were here, we neglected them. For all you know, the place closed down moments after the last time you walked out the door. (Ten months ago? Six years? Fifteen? You can’t remember, can you?) And there have been five stores in that spot before the travel agency. Five different neighborhoods coming and going between then and now, other people’s other cities. Or 15, 25, 100 neighborhoods. Thousands of people pass that storefront every day, each one haunting the streets of his or her own New York, not one of them seeing the same thing.Colson Whitehead
I don’t think it would have all got me quite so down if just once in a while—just once in a while—there was at least some polite little perfunctory implication that knowledge should lead to wisdom, and that if it doesn’t, it’s just a disgusting waste of time! But there never is! You never even hear any hints dropped on a campus that wisdom is supposed to be the goal of knowledge. You hardly ever even hear the word ‘wisdom’ mentioned!J.D. Salinger
But if you tell folks you’re a college student, folks are so impressed. You can be a student in anything and not have to know anything. Just say toxicology or marine biokinesis, and the person you’re talking to will change the subject to himself. If this doesn’t work, mention the neural synapses of embryonic pigeons.Chuck Palahniuk
Here is a lesson in creative writing. First rule: Do not use semicolons. They are transvestite hermaphrodites representing absolutely nothing. All they do is show you’ve been to college.Kurt Vonnegut
The brain is wider than the sky.Emily Dickinson
A good bookshop is just a genteel Black Hole that knows how to read.Terry Pratchett
It’s so tedious writing cookbooks or writing the recipes because I’ve never been much of a measurer. But to write a book, you have to measure everything.Maya Angelou
Resentment is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die.Carrie Fisher
Moral indignation is jealousy with a halo.H.G. Wells
Pick a theme and work it to exhaustion… the subject must be something you truly love or truly hate.Dorothea Lange
There is only one difference between a madman and me. I am not mad.Charlotte Brontë
What is hardest to accept about the passage of time is that the people who once mattered the most to us wind up in parentheses.John Irving, The Cider House Rules
So, in the interests of survival, they trained themselves to be agreeing machines instead of thinking machines. All their minds had to do was to discover what other people were thinking, and then they thought that, too.Kurt Vonnegut
Without translation, we would be living in provinces bordering on silence.George Steiner
Translation is a disturbing craft because there is precious little certainty about what we are doing, which makes it so difficult in this age of fervent belief and ideology, this age of greed and screed.Gregory Rabassa
The writing of a novel is taking life as it already exists, not to report it but to make an object, toward the end that the finished work might contain this life inside it and offer it to the reader. The essence will not be, of course, the same thing as the raw material; it is not even of the same family of things. The novel is something that never was before and will not be again.Eudora Welty
If it sounds like writing, I rewrite it. Or, if proper usage gets in the way, it may have to go. I can’t allow what we learned in English composition to disrupt the sound and rhythm of the narrative.Elmore Leonard
Each writer is born with a repertory company in his head. Shakespeare has perhaps 20 players. … I have 10 or so, and that’s a lot. As you get older, you become more skillful at casting them.Gore Vidal