Try to learn to breathe deeply, really to taste food when you eat, and when you sleep, really to sleep. Try as much as possible to be wholly alive with all your might, and when you laugh, laugh like hell. And when you get angry, get good and angry. Try to be alive. You will be dead soon enough.
I had an inheritance from my father,
It was the moon and the sun.
And though I roam all over the world,
The spending of it's never done.
I know the night is not the same as the day: that all things are different, that the things of the night cannot be explained in the day, because they do not then exist, and the night can be a dreadful time for lonely people once their loneliness has started.
I learned never to empty the well of my writing, but always to stop when there was still something there in the deep part of the well, and let it refill at night from the springs that fed it.
Once we have a war there is only one thing to do. It must be won. For defeat brings worse things than any that can ever happen in war.
People were always the limiters of happiness except for the very few that were as good as spring itself.
It is one thing to be in the proximity of death, to know more or less what she is, and it is quite another thing to seek her.
Night is always darker before the dawn and life is the same, the hard times will pass, everything will get better and sun will shine brighter than ever.
Forget your personal tragedy. We are all bitched from the start and you especially have to be hurt like hell before you can write seriously. But when you get the damned hurt use it -- don't cheat with it.
All a man has is pride. Sometimes you have it so much it is a sin. We have all done things for pride that we knew were impossible. We didn't care. But a man must implement his pride with intelligence and care.
Night is always darker before the dawn and life is the same, the hard times will pass, every thing will get better and sun will shine brighter than ever.
The most painful thing is losing yourself in the process of loving someone too much, and forgetting that you are special too.
Forget your personal tragedy. We are all bitched from the start and you especially have to be hurt like hell before you can write seriously. But when you get the damned hurt, use it-don't cheat with it.
When writing a novel a writer should create living people; people not characters. A character is a caricature.
Personal columnists are jackals and no jackal has been known to live on grass once he had learned about meat -- no matter who killed the meat for him.
On the 'Star,' you were forced to learn to write a simple declarative sentence. This is useful to anyone. Newspaper work will not harm a young writer and could help him if he gets out of it in time.
The good parts of a book may be only something a writer is lucky enough to overhear or it may be the wreck of his whole damn life and one is as good as the other.
There are events which are so great that if a writer has participated in them his obligation is to write truly rather than assume the presumption of altering them with invention.
Decadence is a difficult word to use since it has become little more than a term of abuse applied by critics to anything they do not yet understand or which seems to differ from their moral concepts.
It's none of their business that you have to learn how to write. Let them think you were born that way.
If you have a success you have it for the wrong reasons. If you become popular it is always because of the worst aspects of your work.
A serious writer is not to be confounded with a solemn writer. A serious writer may be a hawk or a buzzard or even a popinjay, but a solemn writer is always a bloody owl.
There is no rule on how to write. Sometimes it comes easily and perfectly; sometimes it's like drilling rock and then blasting it out with charges.
They wrote in the old days that it is sweet and fitting to die for one's country. But in modern war, there is nothing sweet nor fitting in your dying. You will die like a dog for no good reason.
When you have shot one bird flying you have shot all birds flying. They are all different and they fly in different ways but the sensation is the same and the last one is as good as the first.
When I have an idea, I turn down the flame, as if it were a little alcohol stove, as low as it will go. Then it explodes and that is my idea.
If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast.
If a writer knows enough about what he is writing about, he may omit things that he knows. The dignity of movement of an iceberg is due to only one ninth of it being above water.
For a true writer, each book should be a new beginning where he tries again for something that is beyond attainment. He should always try for something that has never been done or that others have tried and failed. Then sometimes, with great luck, he will succeed.
There is no lonelier man in death, except the suicide, than that man who has lived many years with a good wife and then outlived her. If two people love each other there can be no happy end to it.
Things may not be immediately discernible in what a man writes, and in this sometimes he is fortunate; but eventually they are quite clear, and by these and the degree of alchemy that he possesses, he will endure or be forgotten.
About morals, I know only that what is moral is what you feel good after and what is immoral is what you feel bad after.
You can wipe out your opponents. But if you do it unjustly you become eligible for being wiped out yourself.
I love to go to the zoo. But not on Sunday. I don't like to see the people making fun of the animals, when it should be the other way around.