Literary Birthday – 22 April – Vladimir Nabokov

Vladimir Nabokov was born 22 April 1899, and died 2 July 1977.

Vladimir Nabokov Quotes

  1. Lolita is famous, not I. I am an obscure, doubly obscure, novelist with an unpronounceable name.
  2. The pages are still blank, but there is a miraculous feeling of the words being there, written in invisible ink and clamouring to become visible.
  3. Style and Structure are the essence of a book; great ideas are hogwash.
  4. The writer’s job is to get the main character up a tree, and then once they are up there, throw rocks at them.
  5. A writer should have the precision of a poet and the imagination of a scientist.
  6. Turning one’s novel into a movie script is rather like making a series of sketches for a painting that has long ago been finished and framed.
  7. The more you love a memory, the stronger and stranger it is.
  8. Knowing you have something good to read before bed is among the most pleasurable of sensations.
  9. Literature and butterflies are the two sweetest passions known to man.
  10. I don’t think in any language. I think in images.
  11. There is nothing in the world that I loathe more than group activity, that communal bath where the hairy and slippery mix in a multiplication of mediocrity.
  12. Nothing revives the past so completely as a smell that was once associated with it.
  13. My loathings are simple: stupidity, oppression, crime, cruelty, soft music. My pleasures are the most intense known to man: writing and butterfly hunting.
  14. I think like a genius, I write like a distinguished author, I speak like a child.

Must-read: Vladimir Nabokov’s 3 Qualities For A Major Writer

Vladimir Nabokov was a Russian-American novelist. He was known for his use of complex and original plots, and clever alliteration and wordplay. Nabokov’s Lolita  is his most famous novel. He was a finalist for the National Book Award for Fiction seven times, but never won it. He also made serious contributions as a lepidopterist and chess composer.

Source for Image: Walter Mori (Mondadori Publishers), Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

by Amanda Patterson

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Posted on: 22nd April 2013