In my time and neighborhood (and in my soul) there was only one standard by which a woman measured success: did some man want her?
Writing is a solitary occupation. Family, friends, and society are the natural enemies of the writer. He must be alone, uninterrupted, and slightly savage if he is to sustain and complete an undertaking.
There are two barriers that often prevent communication between the young and their elders. The first is middle-aged forgetfulness of the fact that they themselves are no longer young. The second is youthful ignorance of the fact that the middle aged are still alive.
A taste for irony has kept more hearts from breaking than a sense of humor, for it takes irony to appreciate the joke which is on oneself.
Only a fool would refuse to enter a fool’s paradise when that’s the only paradise he’ll ever have a chance to enter.
Faithfulness to the past can be a kind of death above ground. Writing of the past is a resurrection; the past then lives in your words and you are free.
The sick soon come to understand that they live in a different world from that of the well and that the two cannot communicate.
If you train people properly, they won’t be able to tell a drill from the real thing. If anything, the real thing will be easier.
We want the facts to fit the preconceptions. When they don’t it is easier to ignore the facts than to change the preconceptions.
It is very east to forgive others their mistakes; it takes more grit and gumption to forgive them for having witnessed your own.
The West is color. Its colors are animal rather than vegetable, the colors of earth and sunlight and ripeness.
You read a book from beginning to end. You run a business the opposite way. You start with the end, and then you do everything you must to reach it.