Liberty of the imagination should be the most precious possession of a novelist.
To speak today of a famous novelist is like speaking of a famous cabinetmaker or speedboat designer. Adjective is inappropriate to noun.gore vidal
A novelist is, like all mortals, more fully at home on the surface of the present than in the ooze of the past.vladimir nabokov
Dickens was not the first or the last novelist to find virtue more difficult to portray than the wish for it.
Detach the writer from the milieu where he has experienced his greatest sense of belonging, and you have created a discontinuity within his personality, a short circuit in his identity. The result is his originality, his creativity comes to an end. He becomes the one-book novelist or the one-trilogy writer.Henry Roth
The novelist must be his own most harsh critic and also his own most loving admirerand about both he must say nothing.SirAngus FrankJohnstone Wilson
The business of a novelist is, in my opinion, to create characters first and foremost, and then to set them in the snarl of the human currents of his time, so that there results an accurate permanent record of a phase of history.john dos passos
The point I would make is that the novelist and the historian are seeking the same thing: the truth — not a different truth: the same truth — only they reach it, or try to reach it, by different routes. Whether the event took place in a world now gone to dust, preserved by documents and evaluated by scholarship, or in the imagination, preserved by memory and distilled by the creative process, they both want to tell us how it was: to re-create it, by their separate methods, and make it live again in the world around them.shelby foote
The novelist, thinks Sam, perspiring beneath blankets, must live in paranoia and seek to be one with the world; he must be terrified of experience and hungry for it; he must think himself nothing and believe he is superior to all. The feminine in his nature cries out for proof he is a man; he loves himself and therefore despises all that he is.norman mailer
Norman was a splendid, surprising American writer, a good friend, a true New Yorker, and a man we will all miss. To me, it's like a thousand people just left the room. As a novelist, he never repeated himself, never succumbed to the temptation to write 'The Naked and the Dead Go to Japan,' and always made us imagine other lives, other choices, other varieties of human folly, grandeur and capacity for evil.norman mailer
A novelist may lose his readers for a few pages; a playwright never dares lose his audience for a minute.terence rattigan
But I have seen my obstacles: trivialities, learning and poetry. This last needs explaining: the old artist's readiness to dissolve characters into a haze. Characters cannot come alive and fight and guide the world unless the novelist wants them to remain characters.e. m. forster
The economy of a novelist is a little like that of a careful housewife who is unwilling to throw away anything that might perhaps serve its turn. Perhaps the comparison is closer to the Chinese cook who leaves hardly any part of a duck unserved.graham greene
He's a monumental figure, a novelist. I remember him best for From Here to Eternity and The Thin Red Line among the best war literature of Americans. Probably for this reason: I think it is one of the few war books written by somebody who was there, in the military and in combat . 'Most of our other war books are not.james jones
James Jones was a curiously American phenomenon: the great novelist who comes out of nowhere, equipped only with talent and a fierce determination to write.james jones
The artist deals in what cannot be said in words . The artist whose medium is fiction does this in words . The novelist says in words what cannot be said in words.ursula k. le guin
Lolita is famous, not I. I am an obscure, doubly obscure, novelist with an unpronounceable name.vladimir nabokov
A novelist who ranks with Proust , Kafka , Musil and his friend James Joyce as one of the enduring pillars of Modernism.italo svevo
I see myself as a novelist, period. I mean, the material I work with is what is classified as science fiction and fantasy, and I really don't think about these things when I'm writing. I'm just thinking about telling a story and developing my characters.roger zelazny
The most common human act that writing a novel resembles is lying. The working novelist lies daily, very complexly, and at great length. If not for our excessive vanity and our over-active imaginations , novelists might be unusually difficult to deceive .
The only excuse for a novelist, aside from the entertainment and vicarious living his books give the people who read them, is as a sort of second-class historian of the age he lives in. The "reality" he missed by writing about imaginary people, he gains by being able to build a reality more nearly out of his own factual experience than a plain historian or biographer can.john dos passos
But I have seen my obstacles: trivialities, learning and poetry. This last needs explaining: the old artist's readiness to dissolve characters into a haze. Characters cannot come alive and fight and guide the world unless the novelist wants them to remain characters.
...in a volume of dozen lines of Milton, Proper and Prior, with a paper from the Spectator and a chapter from the Sterne are eulogized by a thousand pens-there seems almost a general wish of decrying the capacity and undervaluing the labour of the novelist, and slighting the performance which have only genius, wit and taste to recommend them.