Rooks were cawing somewhere, and bells were ringing, and from the oxpens the steady beat of a gas engine announced the ascent of the evening Royal Mail zeppelin for London.
All writing is difficult. The most you can hope for is a day when it goes reasonably easily. Plumbers don't get plumber's block, and doctors don't get doctor's block; why should writers be the only profession that gives a special name to the difficulty of working, and then expects sympathy for it?
Eventually, child, you will come to the land of the dead with no effort, no risk, a safe, calm journey, in the company of your own death, your special, devoted friend, who's been beside you every moment of your life, who knows you better than yourself.
If I'm reading something I happen to know and gets it wrong, I just don't trust the book any more. What I ask of a novel I'm reading is that it should know a fraction more about the things I know than I do. When I'm writing...I ask myself: would I be convinced by this if I read it? If I knocked against this bit of scenery, would it feel solid?
So they had language, and they had fire, and they had society. And about then she found an adjustment being made in her mind, as the word creatures became the word people. These beings weren't human, but they were people, she told herself; it's not them, they're us.
If you wanted to divert a mighty river into a different course, and all you had was a single pebble, you could do it, as long as you put the pebble in the right place to send the first trickle of water that way instead of this.
Religion begins in story. Yes, it does, because religion is an attempt to make sense of what is incomprehensible to us, what is inexplicable, what is awe-inspiring, what is frightening, what moves us to great wonder, and so on. That is the religious impulse, and it is part of our psychological makeup -- of everyone's psychological makeup.