Thursday, April 13, 2017

“If you haven't surprised yourself, you haven't written.” ― Eudora Welty

“Gardening is akin to writing stories. No experience could have taught me more about grief or flowers, about achieving survival by going, your fingers in the ground, the limit of physical exhaustion.”
― Eudora Welty

“All experience is an enrichment rather than an impoverishment.”
― Eudora Welty, One Writer's Beginnings

“If you haven't surprised yourself, you haven't written.”
― Eudora Welty

“The events in our lives happen in a sequence in time, but in their significance to ourselves they find their own order, a timetable not necessarily--perhaps not possibly--chronological. The time as we know it subjectively is often the chronology that stories and novels follow: it is the continuous thread of revelation.”
― Eudora Welty, One Writer's Beginnings

“Laurel could not see her face but only the back of her neck, the most vulnerable part of anybody, and she thought: Is there any sleeping person you can be entirely sure you have not misjudged?”
― Eudora Welty, The Optimist's Daughter

“Suppose you meet me in the woods.”
― Eudora Welty

“Since we must and do write each our own way, we may during actual writing get more lasting instruction not from another's work, whatever its blessings, however better it is than ours, but from our own poor scratched-over pages. For these we can hold up to life. That is, we are born with a mind and heart to hold each page up to, and to ask: is it valid?”
― Eudora Welty, On Writing

“For her life, any life, she had to believe, was nothing but the continuity of its love.”
― Eudora Welty, The Optimist's Daughter

“She was sent to sleep under a velvety cloak of words, richly patterned and stitched with gold, straight out of a fairy tale, while they went reading on into her dreams.”
― Eudora Welty, The Optimist's Daughter

“Great fiction shows us not how to conduct our behavior but how to feel. Eventually, it may show us how to face our feelings and face our actions and to have new inklings about what they mean. A good novel of any year can initiate us into our own new experience.”
― Eudora Welty, On Writing

“Making reality real is art's responsibility. It is a practical assignment, then, a self-assignment: to achieve, by a cultivated sensitivity for observing life, a capacity for receiving impressions, a lonely, unremitting, unaided, unaidable vision, and transferring this vision without distortion to it onto the pages of a novel, where, if the reader is so persuaded, it will turn into the reader's illusion.”
― Eudora Welty, On Writing

“A whole tree of lightning stood in the sky. She kept looking out the window, suffused with the warmth from the fire and with the pity and beauty and power of her death. The thunder rolled.”
― Eudora Welty

“Writers and travelers are mesmerized alike by the knowing of their destination.”
― Eudora Welty

“Don't give anybody up. . . or leave anybody out. . . . There's room for everything, and time for everybody, if you take your day the way it comes along and try not to be much later than you can help."--Spoken by Jack to Gloria”
― Eudora Welty, Losing Battles

“For the source of the short story is usually lyrical. And all writers speak from, and speak to, emotions eternally the same in all of us: love, pity, terror do not show favorites or leave any of us out.”
― Eudora Welty, On Writing

“Writing is an expression of the writer's own peculiar personality, could not help being so. Yet in reading great works one feels that the finished piece transcends the personal. All writers great and small must sometimes have felt that they have become part of what they wrote even more than it still remains a part of them.”
― Eudora Welty, On Writing

“Characters take on life sometimes by luck, but I suspect it is when you can write more entirely out of yourself, inside the skin, heart, mind, and soul of a person who is not yourself, that a character becomes in his own right another human being on the page.”
― Eudora Welty

“Children, like animals use all their senses to discover the world. Then artists come along and discover it the same way...Or now and then we'll hear from an artisit who's never lost it.”
― Eudora Welty

“Art, though, is never the voice of a country; it is an even more precious thing, the voice of the individual, doing its best to speak, not comfort of any sort, but truth. And the art that speaks it most unmistakably, most directly, most variously, most fully, is fiction; in particular, the novel.”
― Eudora Welty, On Writing

“Human life is fiction's only theme.”
― Eudora Welty, On Writing

“And perhaps it didn't matter to them, not always, what they read aloud; it was the breath of life flowing between them, and the words of the moment riding on it that held them in delight. Between some two people every word is beautiful, or might as well be beautiful.”
― Eudora Welty, The Optimist's Daughter

“But how much better, in any case, to wonder than not to wonder, to dance with astonishment and go spinning in praise, than not to know enough to dance or praise at all; to be blessed with more imagination than you might know at the given moment what to do with than to be cursed with too little to give you -- and other people -- any trouble.”
― Eudora Welty

“Then the light changed the water, until all about them the woods in the rising wind seemed to grow taller and blow inward together and suddenly turn dark. The rain struck heavily. A huge tail seemed to lash through the air and the river broke in a wound of silver.”
― Eudora Welty, The Collected Stories

“I'm a great reader that never has time to read.”
― Eudora Welty, The Ponder Heart

“Both reading and writing are experiences--lifelong-- in the course of which we who encounter words used in certain ways are persuaded by them to be brought mind and heart within the presence, the power, of the imagination.”
― Eudora Welty, On Writing

“It's all right, I want to say to the students who write to me, for things to be what they appear to be, and for words to mean what they say. It's all right, too, for words and appearances to mean more than one thing--ambiguity is a fact of life.”
― Eudora Welty, On Writing

“The events in our lives happen in a sequence in time, but in their significance to ourselves they find their own order.”
― Eudora Welty

“I learned from the age of two or three that any room in our house, at any time of day, was there to read in, or to be read to”
― Eudora Welty

“The first act of insight is throw away the labels. In fiction, while we do not necessarily write about ourselves, we write out of ourselves, using ourselves; what we learn from, what we are sensitive to, what we feel strongly about--these become our characters and go to make our plots. Characters in fiction are conceived from within, and they have, accordingly, their own interior life; they are individuals every time.”
― Eudora Welty, On Writing

“The novelist works neither to correct nor to condone, not at all to comfort, but to make what's told alive.”
― Eudora Welty, On Writing

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