Title Image - Quotes by Author Ray BradburyPhoto Credit: WikiMedia Commons

Welcome to our collection of quotes (with shareable picture quotes) by Ray Bradbury. We hope you enjoy pondering them and that you will share them widely.

Wikipedia Summary for Ray Bradbury

Ray Douglas Bradbury (August 22, 1920 – June 5, 2012) was an American author and screenwriter. One of the most celebrated 20th-century American writers, he worked in a variety of modes, including fantasy, science fiction, horror, mystery, and realistic fiction.

Bradbury was mainly known for his novel Fahrenheit 451 (1953) and his short-story collections The Martian Chronicles (1950) and The Illustrated Man (1951). Most of his best known work is speculative fiction, but he also worked in other genres, such as the coming of age novel Dandelion Wine (1957) and the fictionalized memoir Green Shadows, White Whale (1992). He also wrote and consulted on screenplays and television scripts, including Moby Dick and It Came from Outer Space. Many of his works were adapted into television and film productions as well as comic books.

The New York Times called Bradbury "the writer most responsible for bringing modern science fiction into the literary mainstream."

You have got to jump off the cliff and build your wings on the way down.

--Ray Bradbury

Any man who keeps working is not a failure. He may not be a great writer, but if he applies the old-fashioned virtues of hard, constant labor, he'll eventually make some kind of career for himself as writer.

--Ray Bradbury

Those who live in the best cliffs think they are better than us. That is always man's attitude when he has power.

--Ray Bradbury

You've got to jump off cliffs and build your wings on the way down.

--Ray Bradbury

Learning to let go should be learned before learning to get. Life should be touched, not strangled. You've got to relax, let it happen at times, and at others move forward with it.

--Ray Bradbury

Go to the edge of the cliff and jump off. Build your wings on the way down.

--Ray Bradbury

In our time this search (for extraterrestrial life) will eventually change our laws, our religions, our philosophies, our arts, our recreations, as well as our sciences. Space, the mirror, waits for life to come look for itself there.

--Ray Bradbury

A good night sleep or a ten-minute bawl, or a pint of chocolate ice cream, or all three together, is good medicine.

--Ray Bradbury

I'm not a futurist.

--Ray Bradbury

Burroughs is crap. Crap.

--Ray Bradbury

When I was born in 1920, the auto was only 20 years old. Radio didn't exist. TV didn't exist. I was born at just the right time to write about all of these things.

--Ray Bradbury

You can't help people like her unless they want to be helped. That's the first law of mental health. You know it, I know it.

--Ray Bradbury

To hell with you. To hell with you and to hell with the Internet.

--Ray Bradbury

We must move into the universe. Mankind must save itself. We must escape the danger of war and politics. We must become astronauts and go out into the universe and discover the God in ourselves.

--Ray Bradbury

I ask you, doctor, what is there in the world more selfish than a baby? Nothing!

--Ray Bradbury

We need our Arts to teach us how to breathe.

--Ray Bradbury

The blizzard doesn't last forever; it just seems so.

--Ray Bradbury

It was like a great bee come home from some field where the honey is full of poison wildness, of insanity and nightmare, its body crammed with that over-rich nectar and now it was sleeping the evil out of itself.

--Ray Bradbury

Before the bus had run another fifty yards on the highway, its destination would be meaningless, and its point of departure changed from metropolis to junkyard.

--Ray Bradbury


Let the war turn off the families. Our civilization is flinging itself to pieces. Stand back from the centrifuge.

--Ray Bradbury

Our civilization is flinging itself to pieces. Stand back from the centrifuge.

--Ray Bradbury

For everyone nowadays knows, absolutely certain, that nothing will ever happen to me. Others die, I go on.

--Ray Bradbury

But the tables were silent and the cards untouched.

--Ray Bradbury

When I started writing seriously, I made the major discovery of my life -- that I am right and everybody else is wrong if they disagree with me. What a great thing to learn: Don't listen to anyone else, and always go your own way.

--Ray Bradbury

We're all dreamers.

--Ray Bradbury

Libraries are absolutely at the center of my life. Since I couldn't afford to go to college, I attended the library three or four days a week from the age of eighteen on, and graduated from the library when I was twenty-eight.

--Ray Bradbury

My passions drive me to the typewriter every day of my life, and they have driven me there since I was twelve. So I never have to worry about schedules. Some new thing is always exploding in me, and it schedules me, I don't schedule it. It says: Get to the typewriter right now and finish this.

--Ray Bradbury

Somewhere on the Earth tonight, my Tylla, there is a Man with a Lever, which, when he pulls it, Will Save The World. The man is now unemployed. His switch gathers dust. He himself plays pinochle.

--Ray Bradbury

The man was cold as an albino frog.

--Ray Bradbury

The girl who had known the weather and never been burnt by fireflies, the girl who had known what dandelions meant rubbed off on your chin.
Then, she would be gone.

--Ray Bradbury

Suddenly the day was gone, night came out from under each tree and spread.

--Ray Bradbury

When we had all the books we needed, we still insisted on finding the highest cliff to jump off. But we do need a breather. We do need knowledge. And perhaps in a thousand years we might pick smaller cliffs to jump off. The books are to remind us what asses and fools we are.

--Ray Bradbury

I often wonder if God recognizes His own son the way we've dressed him up, or is it dressed him down? He's a regular peppermint stick now, all sugar-crystal and saccharine when he isn't making veiled references to certain commercial products that every worshiper absolutely needs.

--Ray Bradbury

A reason I became a writer was to escape the hopelessness and despair of the real world and enter the world of hope I could create with my imagination.

--Ray Bradbury

For if we're destroyed, the knowledge is dead...We're nothing more than dust jackets for books...so many pages to a person.

--Ray Bradbury

From now on I hope always to educate myself as best I can. But lacking this, in future I will relaxedly turn back to my secret mind to see what it has observed when I thought I was sitting this one out. We never sit anything out.

--Ray Bradbury

The river was very real; it held him comfortably and gave him the time at last, the leisure, to consider this month, this year, and a lifetime of years.

--Ray Bradbury

The courthouse clock struck nine and it was getting late and it was really night on this small street in a small town in a big state on a large continent on a planet earth hurtling down the pit of space toward nowhere or somewhere and Tom feeling every mile of the long drop.

--Ray Bradbury

We have everything we need to be happy, but we aren't happy,Something's missing!

--Ray Bradbury

How talented was death. How many expressions and manipulations of hand, face, body, no two alike.

--Ray Bradbury

Who has more pockets than a magician? A boy. Whose pockets contain *more* than a magicians? A boy's.

--Ray Bradbury

You don't organize metaphors ... you explode them.

--Ray Bradbury

You'd type like hell. I spent $9.80 and in nine days I had Fahrenheit 451.

--Ray Bradbury

Mysteries abound where most we seek for answers.

--Ray Bradbury

What should I do? Throw up in your typewriter every morning. Yeah. Clean up every noon.

--Ray Bradbury

I'm afraid of them and they don't like me because I'm afraid.

--Ray Bradbury

It shows too much. Women are meant to be inhaled, not impaled.

--Ray Bradbury

How do you get so empty? he wondered. Who takes it out of you?

--Ray Bradbury

My dear, you never will understand time, will you? You're always trying to be the things you were, instead of the person you are tonight. Why do you save those ticket stubs and theater programs? They'll only hurt you later. Throw them away, my dear.

--Ray Bradbury

I'll be damned if death wears my sadness for glad rags.

--Ray Bradbury

Work. Don't Think. Relax.

--Ray Bradbury

Sexed but sexless, the robots. Named but unnamed, and borrowing from humans everything but humanity, the robots stared at the nailed lids of their labeled F.O.B boxes, in a death that was not even a death, for there had never been a life.

--Ray Bradbury

I am not a science fiction writer. I am a fantasy writer. But the label got put on me and stuck.

--Ray Bradbury

Men read science fiction to build the future. Women don't need to read it. They are the future.

--Ray Bradbury

If you read fast and read all, maybe some of the sand will stay in the sieve.

--Ray Bradbury

Screenplays are not writing. They're a fake form of writing. It's a lot of dialogue and very little atmosphere. Very little description. Very little character work. It's very dangerous. You'll never learn to write.

--Ray Bradbury

No, moaned Tom in despair. School. School straight on ahead! Why, why do dime stores show things like that in windows before summer's even over! Ruin half the vacation!

--Ray Bradbury

The crisis is past and all is well, the sheep returns to the fold. We're all sheep who have strayed at times. Truth is truth, to the end of reckoning, we've cried. They are never alone that are accompanied with noble thoughts, we've shouted to ourselves.

--Ray Bradbury

I don't decide. My secret self decides. I just go with my subconscious. If it wants to do a poem, I do a poem, and if it wants to do a play, I do a play. So I'm not in charge, I'm not in control.

--Ray Bradbury

It is a subliminal thing. It is the tick of a clock that has ticked so long one no longer notices. Something is in a room when a man lives in it. Something is not in the room when a man is dead in it.

--Ray Bradbury

Mr. Montag, you are looking at a coward. I saw the way things were going, a long time back. I said nothing. I'm one of the innocents who could have spoken up and out when no one would listen to thèguilty,' but I did not speak and thus became guilty myself.

--Ray Bradbury

He balanced in space with the book in his sweating cold fingers.

--Ray Bradbury

He had seen her painted sign by the road: Skin Illustration! Illustration instead of tattoo! Artistic!

--Ray Bradbury

He saw many hands held to its warmth, hands without arms, hidden in darkness. Above the hands, motionless faces that were only moved and tossed and flickered with firelight. He hadn't known fire could look this way. He had never thought in his life that it could give as well as take.

--Ray Bradbury

Trains and boxcars and the smell of coal and fire are not ugly to children. Ugliness is a concept that we happen on later and become self-conscious about.

--Ray Bradbury

Life is like underwear, should be changed twice a day.

--Ray Bradbury

At the top of your lungs, shout and listen to the echoes. You must live life at the top of your voice!

--Ray Bradbury

Writing can be described in two verbs: Throw up and clean up.

--Ray Bradbury

We are the witnesses to the miracle. We are put here by creation, by God....We're here to be the audience to the magnificent. It is our job to celebrate.

--Ray Bradbury

You're peculiar, you're aggravating, yet you're easy to forgive. You say you're seventeen?..How odd. How strange. And my wife thirty and yet you seem so much older at times. I can't get over it.

--Ray Bradbury

I don't write science fiction. I've only done one science fiction book and that's Fahrenheit 451, based on reality. Science fiction is a depiction of the real. Fantasy is a depiction of the unreal.

--Ray Bradbury

Remember, Montag, we're the happiness boys. We stand against the small tide of those who want to make everyone unhappy with conflicting theory and thought.

--Ray Bradbury

Now that I have you thoroughly confused, let me pause to hear your own dismayed cry.

--Ray Bradbury

I was only kicking down the Christmas tree to get the star on top.

--Ray Bradbury

Really knowing is good. Not knowing, or refusing to know, is bad, or amoral, at least. You can't act if you don't know. Acting without knowing takes you right off the cliff.

--Ray Bradbury

I don't think about what I do. I do it. That's Buddhism. I jump off the cliff and build my wings on the way down.

--Ray Bradbury

He raged for hours. And the skeleton, ever the frail and solelmn philosopher, hung quietly inside, saying not a word, suspended like a delicate insect within a chrysalis, waiting and waiting.

--Ray Bradbury

The library is the biggest cracker box factory in the world. The more you eat, the more you want.

--Ray Bradbury

I don't like being up high. It took me three days to get to the top of the Eiffel Tower.

--Ray Bradbury

Any man who keeps working is not a failure. He may not be a great writer, but if he applies the old-fashioned virtues of hard, constant labor, he'll eventually make some kind of career for himself as writer.
1967 interview.

--Ray Bradbury

If teachers and grammar school editors find my jawbreaker sentences shatter their mushmilk teeth, let them eat stale cake dunked in weak tea of their own ungodly manufacture.

--Ray Bradbury

If someone tells you to do something for money, tell them to go to hell.

--Ray Bradbury

Friendship is an island that you retreat to and you all fall on the floor and laugh at all the other ninnies that don't have enough brains to have your good taste.

--Ray Bradbury

Each person was himself one alone. One oneness, a unit in a society, but always afraid, always alone. If I should scream, if I should call for help, would anyone hear would it even matter?

--Ray Bradbury

Do you ever wonder if -- well, if there are people living on the third planet?'
'The third planet is incapable of supporting life,' stated the husband patiently. 'Our scientists have said there's far too much oxygen in their atmosphere.

--Ray Bradbury

The trouble with a lot of people who try to write is they intellectualize about it. That comes after. The intellect is given to us by God to test things once they're done, not to worry about things ahead of time.

--Ray Bradbury

Look at it this way, child, life is a magic show, or should be if people didn't go to sleep on each other. Always leave folks with a bit of mystery, son.

--Ray Bradbury

Everything that happens before Death is what counts.

--Ray Bradbury

It takes writing a billion bad words before you get to the good ones.

--Ray Bradbury

Quotes by Ray Bradbury are featured in:


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