If you're lucky enough to have 70 years of literate adulthood, and if you read one book every week, you're still only going to get to 3,640 books.

Anthony Doerr

Anthony Doerr

Profession: Novelist
Nationality: American

Some suggestions for you :

Supposedly, some writers work in rowdy coffee shops or compose whole novels to Megadeth, but when I write, I wear a pair of chainsaw operator's earmuffs.

I originally got very interested in memory in high school when my grandmother came to live with us. She had been diagnosed with dementia. It was the first time I had heard the word 'Alzheimer's disease.'

The world is so fundamentally interesting that it makes me fall in love with it a dozen times a day.

If our biological imperative is to pass our genes to the next generation, our moral imperative has to be to try, before we become corpses, to leave them a planet they can survive on.

Pretty much every night of their lives, my 8-year-old sons have absorbed themselves entirely in books. As toddlers, they pointed out pictures, made conjectures; lately, we find them in their bunk beds embarked upon two-hour comic-reading benders.

When I was a boy, all the books I owned fit on a single shelf. Now I have several thousand stacked around the house.

I subscribe to the theory that reading a book is similar to walking a trail, and I'm most comfortable walking when I can see where I'm going and where I've been. When I'm reading a printed book, the weight of the pages I've turned gives me a sense of how far I've come.

Anyone who has spent a few nights in a tent during a storm can tell you: The world doesn't care all that much if you live or die.

Fiction writing is just an excuse to go discover interesting things.

My ribs ache from all the texts I'll never make time for.

For me it was perfect, because it wasn't a very competitive environment, and it was a studio program. They basically send you off, and say, bring us some work, and we'll help you improve it. It really rewarded self-discipline.

Every artist wants an audience, and it's incredible to me how books take on a life of their own and reach people whom you could never meet. That's what got me interested in writing in the first place.

You and I can go on YouTube and learn how to fix a tractor engine or learn Farsi. Groups are using those tools to recruit young people into a climate of hatred.

'Never do the dishes without music,' my brother Mark once advised me - the same brother who once ate a spoonful of refrigerated dog food to escape his turn at the kitchen sink. And really, it may be the most sensible advice I've been given.