Literary Birthday – 24 June – Anita Desai

Happy Birthday, Anita Desai, born 24 June 1937.

Seven Quotes

  1. When I was taught how to write and read at school, I made up my mind that this was what I love to do best and this was the world I was going to occupy.
  2. Wherever you go becomes a part of you somehow.
  3. Usually a feeling of disappointment follows the book, because what I hoped to write is not what I actually accomplished. However, it becomes a motivation to write the next book.
  4. Someone who wants to write should make an effort to write a little something every day. Writing in this sense is the same as athletes who practise a sport every day to keep their skills honed.
  5. I try to trace the connection between the characters and that way a story or plot emerges.
  6. Reality is merely one-tenth visible section of the iceberg that one sees above the surface of the ocean – art remaining nine-tenths of it that lies below the surface. That is why it is more near Truth than Reality itself. Art does not merely reflect Reality – it enlarges it.
  7. Isn’t it strange how life won’t flow, like a river, but moves in jumps, as if it were held back by locks that are opened now and then to let it jump forwards in a kind of flood?

Anita Desai is an Indian novelist who has been short-listed for the Booker Prize three times. She won the British Guardian Prize for The Village by the Sea. Desai now teaches at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. A list of her works can be found here.

by Amanda Patterson

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Posted on: 24th June 2014