Happy Birthday, Gordon Lish, born 11 February 1934.
- I see the notion of talent as quite irrelevant. I see instead perseverance, application, industry, assiduity, will, will, will, desire, desire, desire.
- It’s not what happens to people on the page; it’s about what happens to a reader in his heart and mind.
- Never be sincere – sincerity is the death of writing.
- I have come to be convinced that it is only the unbending observance of custom that sustains life in an urban circumstance.
- Don’t have stories; have sentences.
- It is necessary to attempt some kind of severance between ourselves and the noise that is everywhere thus. Is that doable? I don’t know that it is doable, but one makes the effort. We have to first be cocky enough; we have to first be solipsistic enough, to believe that our noise, the noise we hope to project, is the noise worth hearing.
- The secret of good writing is telling the truth.
- Wear your heart on the page, and people will read to find out how you solved being alive.
Gordon Lish is an American writer. As a literary editor, he championed many new American authors, including Raymond Carver, Barry Hannah, Amy Hempel, Rick Bass, and Richard Ford. His own works include What I Know So Far: Stories, Self-Imitation of Myself, and Dear Mr. Capote.
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