A book, a true book, is the writer's confessional. For, whether he would have it so or not, he is betrayed, directly or indirectly, by his characters, into presenting publicly his innermost feelings.
A certain ruthlessness and a sense of alienation from society is as essential to creative writing as it is to armed robbery.
And money can't buy everything. For example: poverty.
Any writer who knows what he's doing isn't doing very much.
Chicago is an October sort of city even in spring.
Downtown Paterson is really... something you shouldn't see after midnight.
I never get nowheres but I pay my own fare all the way.
If Jesus Christ treated me like you do, I'd drive in the nails myself.
Lies are just a poor man's pennies.
Life is hard by the yard, son. But you don't have to do it by the yard. By the inch it's a cinch. And money can't buy everything. For example: poverty.
Loving Chicago is like loving a woman with a broken nose.
Never play cards with a man called Doc. Never eat at a place called Mom's. Never sleep with a woman whose troubles are worse than your own.
Our myths are so many, our vision so dim, our self-deception so deep and our smugness so gross that scarcely any way now remains of reporting the American Century except from behind the billboards...
The avocation of assessing the failures of better men can be turned into a comfortable livelihood, providing you back it up with a Ph.D.
The hard necessity of bringing the judge on the bench down into the dock has been the peculiar responsibility of the writer in all ages of man.
There is no way of being a creative writer in America without being a loser.
There's people in hell who want ice water.
When we get more houses than we can live in, more cars than we can ride in, more food than we can eat ourselves, the only way of getting richer is by cutting off those who don't have enough.
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