The thought of him was a smoky cloud from hell that moved and crept in her head.
The whole effort for the past one hundred years has been to remove the moral responsibility from the individual and make him blame his own human wickedness on his society, but he helps to make his society, you see, and he will not take his responsibility for his part in it.
With the most infinite tenderness I have ever known in my life, he put his arms around me, gently, gently, and I embraced him around the neck, and we touched...
Most people won't realize that writing is a craft. You have to take your apprenticeship in it like anything else.
Experience is what really happens to you in the long run; the truth that finally overtakes you.
All the old houses that I knew when I was a child were full of books, bought generation after generation by members of the family. Everyone was literate as a matter of course. Nobody told you to read this or not to read that. It was there to read, and we read.
I get so tired of moral bookkeeping.
She wished to sit down quietly and wait for her death, but not until she had cut the throats of her man and that girl who were laughing and kissing under the cornstalks.
One of the marks of a gift is to have the courage of it.
The past is never where you think you left it.
The boys ate warily, trying not to be seen or heard, the cornbread sticking, the buttermilk gurgling, as it went down their gullets.
A story is like something you wind out of yourself. Like a spider, it is a web you weave, and you love your story like a child.
You waste life when you waste good food.
Trust your happiness and the richness of your life at this moment. It is as true and as much yours as anything else that ever happened to you.
God does not know whether a skin is black or white, He sees only souls.
It is my conviction that when events are forgotten, buried in the cellar of the page, they are no longer even history.
If I didn't know the ending of a story, I wouldn't begin. I always write my last lines, my last paragraph first, and then I go back and work towards it. I know where I'm going. I know what my goal is. And how I get there is God's grace.
People can't hear anything except when it's nonsense. Then they hear every word. If you try to talk sense, they think you don't mean it, or don't know anything anyway, or it's not true, or it's against religion, or it's not what they are used to reading in the newspapers...
Shut your eyes, said Miss Tanner.
They had both noticed that a life of dissipation sometimes gave to a face the look of gaunt suffering spirituality that a life of asceticism was supposed to give and quite often did not.