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Amy Tan Quotes

Please enjoy these encouraging quotes by Amy Tan.

I didn't fear failure.
I expected failure.
- Amy Tan

Placing on writers the responsibility to represent
a culture is an onerous burden.
- Amy Tan

I started a second novel seven times and I had to throw them away.
- Amy Tan

God, life changes faster than you think.
- Amy Tan

 

In America nobody says you have to keep the circumstances somebody else gives you.
- Amy Tan

It's both rebellion and conformity that attack you with success.
- Amy Tan

I learned to forgive myself, and that enabled me to
forgive my mother as a person.
- Amy Tan

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- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

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I have a writer's memory which makes everything worse
than maybe it actually was.
- Amy Tan

It's a luxury being a writer, because all you ever think about is life.
- Amy Tan

I was intelligent enough to make up my own mind.
I not only had freedom of choice, I had freedom of expression.
- Amy Tan

That was a wonderful period in my life.
I mean, I didn't become an artist, but somebody let me do something I loved.
What a luxury, to do something you love to do.
- Amy Tan

You can get sucked into the idea that,
'Gosh, this is impressive.
Maybe I should do this.
It will look good.' Or 'I'll write like this because
it will impress that critic.'
- Amy Tan

The forbidden things were a great influence on my life.
I was forbidden from reading A Catcher in the Rye.
- Amy Tan

I think I've always been somebody, since the deaths
of my father and brother,
who was afraid to hope.
So, I was more prepared for failure and for rejection than for success.
- Amy Tan

My parents had very high expectations.
They expected me to get straight A's from the time I was in kindergarten.
- Amy Tan

I did not lose myself all at once.
I rubbed out my face over the years washing away my pain,
the same way carvings on stone are worn down by water.
- Amy Tan

I thought I was clever enough to write as well as these
people and I didn't realize that there is something
called originality and your own voice.
- Amy Tan

My mother had a very difficult childhood,
having seen her own mother kill herself.
So she didn't always know how to be the nurturing mother
that we all expect we should have.
- Amy Tan

People think it's a terrible tragedy when somebody has Alzheimer's.
But in my mother's case, it's different.
My mother has been unhappy all her life.
For the first time in her life, she's happy.
- Amy Tan

Who knows where inspiration comes from.
Perhaps it arises from desperation.
Perhaps it comes from the flukes of the universe,
the kindness of the muses.
- Amy Tan

My mother said I was a clingy kid until I was about four.
I also remember that from the age of eight she and
I fought almost every day.
- Amy Tan

Writing is an extreme privilege but it's also a gift.
It's a gift to yourself and it's a gift of giving a story to someone.
- Amy Tan

I also thought of playing improvisational jazz and
I did take lessons for a while.
At first I tried to write fiction by making up things
that were completely alien to my life.
- Amy Tan

I loved fairy tales when I was a kid.
Grimm.
The grimmer the better.
I loved gruesome gothic tales and, in that respect,
I liked Bible stories, because to me they were very gothic.
- Amy Tan

I used to think that my mother got into arguments with
people because they didn't understand her English,
because she was Chinese.
- Amy Tan

No one in my family was a reader of literary fiction.
So, I didn't have encouragement, but I didn't have discouragement,
because I don't think anybody knew what that meant.
- Amy Tan

There are a lot of people who think that's what's needed
to be successful is always being right,
always being careful, always picking the right path.
- Amy Tan

I read a book a day when I was a kid.
My family was not literary; we did not have any books in the house.
- Amy Tan

You write a book and you hope somebody will go out
and pay $24.95 for what you've just said.
I think books were my salvation.
Books saved me from being miserable.
- Amy Tan

I wanted to write stories for myself.
At first it was purely an aesthetic thing about craft.
I just wanted to become good at the art of something.
And writing was very private.
- Amy Tan

I would still like to have that luxury,
to be able to just sit and draw for hours and hours and hours.
In a way, that's what I do as a writer.
- Amy Tan

Words to me were magic.
You could say a word and it could conjure up all kinds
of images or feelings or a chilly sensation or whatever.
It was amazing to me that words had this power.
- Amy Tan

My parents told me I would become a doctor and then
in my spare time I would become a concert pianist.
So, both my day job and my spare time were sort of taken care of.
- Amy Tan

She said 'I'm by commission.
You don't have to pay anything until you sell anything.'
I said,
'Well fine.
You want to be my agent and not make anything.'
I thought,
'Boy, is she dumb.'
- Amy Tan

I would find myself laughing and wondering where these ideas came from.
You can call it imagination, I suppose.
But I was grateful for wherever they came from.
- Amy Tan

I saw my mother in a different light.
We all need to do that.
You have to be displaced from what's comfortable and routine,
and then you get to see things with fresh eyes,
with new eyes.
- Amy Tan

We are the kind of people who obsess over one word...
but we have only one shot to get it right in concert.
It was hard the first time I practiced with them.
I was so nervous that my vocal chords were paralyzed for about a half-hour.
- Amy Tan

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed
by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do.
So throw off the bowlines.
Sail away from the safe harbor.
Catch the trade winds in your sails.
Explore. Dream. Discover.
- widely misattributed to Mark Twain

We are not held back by the love we didn't receive in the past,
but by the love we're not extending in the present.
- Marianne Williamson

Advice is what we ask for when we already know the answer
but wish we didn't.
- Erica Jong

The most important thing about Spaceship Earth -
an instruction book didn't come with it.
- R. Buckminster Fuller

My childhood should have taught me lessons for my own fatherhood,
but it didn't because parenting can only be learned
by people who have no children.
- Bill Cosby

I know God will not give me anything I can't handle.
I just wish he didn't trust me so much.
- Mother Teresa

Does anybody really think that they didn't get what they had
because they didn't have the talent
or the strength or the endurance or the commitment?
- Nelson Mandela

Do you remember the things you were worrying about a year ago?
Didn't you waste a lot of fruitless energy
on account of most of them?
Didn't most of them turn out all right after all?
- Dale Carnegie

I haven't spoken to my wife in years.
I didn't want to interrupt her.
- Rodney Dangerfield

Choose love. Choose to release all resentments.
Forgive everyone. Choose to release all regrets.
Forgive yourself for all decisions that you have ever made
that didn't work out as you hoped.
Forgive yourself for any financial decisions
that didn't meet your expectations.
Release your regrets if you choose
the "wrong" spouse or the "wrong" career.
Today, choose love.
Choose to love yourself.
Choose to love your life.
Choose to love all the friends, family, co-workers,
acquaintances, and others who share your life.
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

Life's like Vegas. You're up, you're down,
but in the end the house always wins.
Doesn't mean you didn't have fun.
- the Woody Allen movie Deconstructing Harry

I didn't make it all the way through third grade for nothing.
- the movie The Rescuers Down Under

If I hadn't met you, I wouldn't like you.
If I didn't like you, I wouldn't love you.
If I didn't love you, I wouldn't miss you.
But I did, I do, and I will.
- Anonymous

My boyfriend and I broke up.
He wanted to get married and I didn't want him to.
- Rita Rudner

I didn't want to marry anybody else in town.
I want my baby to look like you.
- It's a Wonderful Life (1946 movie)

I crashed my boyfriend's birthday when I was 12 years old.
He didn't invite me and so I showed up.
- Isla Fisher

An economist is an expert who will know tomorrow why
the things he predicted yesterday didn't happen today.
- Laurence J. Peter

I kept my babies fed.
I could have dumped them, but I didn't.
I decided that whatever trip I was on,
they were going with me.
You're looking at a real daddy.
- Barry White

Growing up, I didn't have a lot of toys,
and personal entertainment depended on individual ingenuity and imagination -
think up a story and go live it for an afternoon.
- Terry Brooks

I was a brownie for a day.
My mom made me stop.
She didn't want me to conform.
- Sandra Bullock

I wanted to buy a candle holder, but the store didn't have one.
So I got a cake.
- Mitch Hedberg

When you follow your bliss, you put yourself on a kind of track
that has been there all the while waiting for you,
and the life you ought to be living is the one you are living.
When you can see that, you begin to meet people
who are in the field of your bliss,
and they open the doors to you.
I say, follow your bliss and don't be afraid,
and doors will open where you didn't know they were going to be.
If you follow your bliss,
doors will open for you that wouldn't have opened for anyone else.
- Joseph Campbell

Disneyland is a work of love.
We didn't go into Disneyland just with the idea of making money.
- Walt Disney

Mommy smoked but she didn't want us to.
She saw smoke coming out of the barn one time,
so we got whipped.
- Loretta Lynn

I used to want to be a lawyer, but I didn't want to
have half my brain sucked out.
- Max Walker

I have this sense that I didn't really start growing up until my twenties.
- Winona Ryder

The earth is like a spaceship
that didn't come with an operating manual.
- R. Buckminster Fuller

My mom's a Catholic, and my dad's a Jew,
and they didn't want anything to do with anything.
- Isabelle Huppert

I wanted to be a forest ranger or a coal man.
At a very early age, I knew I didn't want to do what my dad did,
which was work in an office.
- Harrison Ford

Dad taught me everything I know.
Unfortunately, he didn't teach me everything he knows.
- Al Unser

The mistakes made by Congress wouldn't be so bad if
the next Congress didn't keep trying to correct them.
- Cullen Hightower

The Russians feared Ike.
They didn't fear me.
- Lyndon B. Johnson

What if happiness were found in the serenity of simple pleasures.
What if we didn't need the newest gizmo... the highest high?
What if happiness is in the air we breathe...
slowly, deeply, and consciously?
What if happiness is one fresh grape, savored with gratitude?
What if happiness is in our oneness with all creation?
What if happiness is about enjoying life exactly as it comes to us -
without chasing after it?
What if happiness is something we CHOOSE...
regardless of our circumstances?
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

The Vatican is against surrogate mothers.
Good thing they didn't have that rule when Jesus was born.
- Elayne Boosler


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- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

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