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Anne Tyler Quotes

Please enjoy these encouraging quotes by Anne Tyler.

The hardest novel to write was Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant.
- Anne Tyler

If I waited till I felt like writing,
I'd never write at all.
- Anne Tyler

When I read, I'm purely a reader.
- Anne Tyler

I save the best of myself for novels,
and I believe it shows.
- Anne Tyler

 

At most I'll spend three or four hours daily,
sometimes less.
- Anne Tyler

For me, writing something down was the only road out.
- Anne Tyler

I've always enjoyed studying the small clues that indicate
a particular class level.
- Anne Tyler

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- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

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People always call it luck when you've acted more sensibly than they have.
- Anne Tyler

I didn't really choose to write; I more or less fell into it.
- Anne Tyler

I forget a book as soon as I finish writing it,
which is not always a good thing.
- Anne Tyler

When I'm working on something, I proceed as if no one else will ever read it.
- Anne Tyler

I spend about a year between novels.
- Anne Tyler

My stories are never quite good enough.
- Anne Tyler

And I am interested in the fact that class is very
much a factor in America,
even though it's not supposed to be.
- Anne Tyler

I do write long, long character notes -
family background,
history, details of appearance - much more than will
ever appear in the novel.
I think this is what lifts a book from that early calculated,
artificial stage.
- Anne Tyler

I consciously try to end my novels at a point where
I won't have to wonder about my characters ever again.
- Anne Tyler

I just want to be told a story, and I want to believe I'm living that story,
and I don't give a thought to influences or method
or any other writerly concerns.
- Anne Tyler

I was standing in the schoolyard waiting for a child
when another mother came up to me.
Have you found work yet? she asked.
Or are you still just writing?
- Anne Tyler

My decision to start a new one is just that,
a decision, since I never get inspirations.
- Anne Tyler

She worded it a bit strongly, but I do find myself
more and more struck by the differences between the sexes.
To put it another way: All marriages are mixed marriages.
- Anne Tyler

I would advise any beginning writer to write the first
drafts as if no one else will ever read them -
without a thought about publication -
and only in the last draft to consider how the work
will look from the outside.
- Anne Tyler

I expect that any day now, I will have said all I have to say;
I'll have used up all my characters,
and then I'll be free to get on with my real life.
- Anne Tyler

I remember leaving the hospital - thinking,
'Wait, are they going to let me just walk off with
him? I don't know beans about babies!
I don't have a license to do this.' We're just amateurs.
- Anne Tyler

I'll write maybe one long paragraph describing the events,
then a page or two breaking the events into chapters,
and then reams of pages delving into my characters.
After that, I'm ready to begin.
- Anne Tyler

I don't want to say I hear voices; well,
actually I do hear voices, but I don't think it's supernatural.
I think it's just that when characters are given enough texture and backbone,
then lo and behold, they stand on their own.
- Anne Tyler

I can never tell ahead of time which book will give me trouble -
some balk every step of the way,
others seem to write themselves - but certainly the mechanics of writing,
finding the time and the psychic space,
are easier now that my children are grown.
- Anne Tyler

My writing day has grown shorter as I've aged,
although it seems to produce the same number of pages.
- Anne Tyler

The Amateur Marriage grew out of the reflection that
of all the opportunities to show differences in character,
surely an unhappy marriage must be the richest.
- Anne Tyler

I never think about the actual process of writing.
I suppose I have a superstition about examining it too closely.
- Anne Tyler

My family can always tell when I'm well into a novel
because the meals get very crummy.
- Anne Tyler

Ever consider what pets must think of us? I mean,
here we come back from a grocery store with the most amazing haul -
chicken,
pork, half a cow.
They must think we're the greatest hunters on earth!
- Anne Tyler

I've always thought a hotel ought to offer optional small animals.
I mean a cat to sleep on your bed at night,
or a dog of some kind to act pleased when you come in.
You ever notice how a hotel room feels so lifeless?
- Anne Tyler

In real life I avoid all parties altogether,
but on paper I can mingle with the best of them.
- Anne Tyler

Time, in general, has always been a central obsession of mine -
what it does to people,
how it can constitute a plot all on its own.
So naturally, I am interested in old age.
- Anne Tyler

None of my own experiences ever finds its way into my work.
However, the stages of my life - motherhood,
middle age, etc.
- often influence my subject matter.
- Anne Tyler

I'm too shy for personal appearances,
and I've found out that anytime I talk about my writing,
I can't do any writing for many weeks afterward.
- Anne Tyler

But what I hope for from a book - either one that I
write or one that I read -
is transparency.
I want the story to shine through.
I don't want to think of the writer.
- Anne Tyler

While armchair travelers dream of going places,
traveling armchairs dream of staying put.
- Anne Tyler

The one ironclad rule is that I have to try.
I have to walk into my writing room and pick up my
pen every weekday morning.
- Anne Tyler

For my own family, I would always choose the makeshift,
surrogate family formed by various characters unrelated by blood.
- Anne Tyler

It's true that it's a solitary occupation,
but you would be surprised at how much companionship
a group of imaginary characters can offer once you get to know them.
- Anne Tyler

Not until the final draft do I force myself to remember
that I'm going to have to think about how it will affect other people.
- Anne Tyler

I think it must be very hard to be one of the new young
writers who are urged to put themselves forward when
it may be the last thing on earth they'd be good at.
- Anne Tyler

It seems to me that good novels celebrate the mystery in ordinary life,
and summing it all up in psychological terms strips the mystery away.
- Anne Tyler

It seems to me that since I've had children,
I've grown richer and deeper.
They may have slowed down my writing for a while,
but when I did write, I had more of a self to speak from.
- Anne Tyler

The hardest of all, is learning to be
a well of affection, and not a fountain,
to show them that we love them,
not when we feel like it, but when they do.
- Nan Fairbrother

The hardest part is what to leave behind, ... It's time to let go!
- A. A. Milne (Winnie-The-Pooh)

The way lies in softness and patience,
as the softest water cuts through the hardest rock.
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

The easiest kind of friendship for me
is with ten thousand people.
The hardest is with one.
- Joan Baez

The softest things in the world overcome
the hardest things in the world.
- Lao Tzu

The hardest thing to understand in the world is the income tax.
- Albert Einstein

The hardest thing to believe about The Fan is not that
Robert De Niro is stalking somebody again but that
anyone cares that much about a baseball player.
- Bernie Lincicome

The hardest part is to travel, and to be away from your family.
- Glenn Tipton

Teaching was the hardest work I had ever done,
and it remains the hardest work I have done to date.
- Ann Richards

Love is the hardest habit to break, and the most difficult to satisfy.
- Drew Barrymore

The hardest problems of pure and applied science can
only be solved by the open collaboration of the world-wide scientific community.
- Kenneth G. Wilson

Producing is the hardest of the three because there is almost no closure.
Every time you solve a problem, another one pops up.
Directing is second, and acting is the most fun.
- Henry Winkler

The job of an editor in a publishing house is the dullest,
hardest, most exciting, exasperating and rewarding
of perhaps any job in the world.
- John Hall Wheelock

It's hard enough to write a good drama,
it's much harder to write a good comedy,
and it's hardest of all to write a drama with comedy.
Which is what life is.
- Jack Lemmon

Books aren't written - they're rewritten.
Including your own.
It is one of the hardest things to accept,
especially after the seventh rewrite hasn't quite done it.
- Michael Crichton

My job, I think, is the hardest job out of all the
judges because I am the only one that is a performer.
- Paula Abdul

The animation of the canvas is one of the hardest problems of painting.
- Alfred Sisley

The hardest task in a girl's life is to prove to a
man that his intentions are serious.
- Helen Rowland

When I'm shooting, really the audience I'm thinking
the hardest about is that first test screening audience
who I want to like the film and that first opening weekend audience.
- Jay Roach

To stand there and do nothing on film is probably the hardest thing to do.
- Thomas Jane

Writing a really general parser is a major but different undertaking,
by far the hardest points being sensitivity to context
and resolution of ambiguity.
- Graham Nelson

The hardest part of it was really being away from my family -
I have two small children.
Last year I took over 20 business trips,
so being away from them was hard.
- James Daly

We have the hardest working people in the world,
the most adaptable and the most congenial to employ.
- Gloria Macapagal Arroyo

Thinking is the hardest work there is,
which is probably the reason why so few engage in it.
- Henry Ford

In these times, the hardest task for social or political
activists is to find a way to get people to wonder
again about what we all believe is true.
The challenge is to sow doubt.
- Lawrence Lessig

All I had to do was go out and perform.
One of the hardest things was doing those back flips,
where you had to jump up and land on the top rope.
It's precision movement.
- Owen Hart


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May the world be kind to you,
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- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

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