I used to want to be a cheerleader, I told them. Before I decided to just go to hell.

Michael Cunningham

Michael Cunningham

Profession: Novelist
Nationality: American

Some suggestions for you :

Virginia Woolf came along in the early part of the century and essentially said through her writing, yes, big books can be written about the traditional big subjects. There is war. There is the search for God. These are all very important things.

Most of us can be counted on to manage our own undoings.

Youth is the only sexy tragedy.

She thinks of how much more space a being occupies in life that it does in death; how much illusion of size is contained in gestures and movements, in breathing. Dead, we are revealed in our true dimensions, and they are surprisingly modest.

Gratitude is the only appropriate response to everything that happens.

Most of us are safe. If you're not a delirious dream the gods are having, if your beauty doesn't trouble the constellations, nobody's going to cast a spell on you.

This is a Southern gift, isn't it - tremendous self-regard diluted with humor and modesty. That's what they mean by Southern charm, right?

It's stores, it's the whole thing, all that shit everywhere, 'scuse me, that merchandise, all those goods, and ads screaming at you from all over the place, buy buy buy buy buy, and when somebody comes up to me with big hair and gobs of makeup on and says, 'Can I help you?', it's all I can do not to scream, 'Bitch, you can't even help yourself.

It's remarkable, being alive. Being, once again, someone walking through a dust of blowing snow...

Dead, we are revealed in our true dimensions, and they are surprisingly modest.

She has failed. She wishes she didn't mind. Something, she thinks, is wrong with her.

Language in fiction is made up of equal parts meaning and music. The sentences should have rhythm and cadence, they should engage and delight the inner ear.

There is still that singular perfection, and its perfect in part because it seemed, at the time, so clearly to promise more. Now she knows: That was the moment, right then. There has been no other.

This, Barrett Meeks, is your work. You witness, and compile. You persevere.