Literary Birthday – 26 March – Tennessee Williams

Tennessee Williams was born 26 March 1911, and died 25 February 1983.

The Top 10 Tennessee Williams Quotes On Writing

  1. At the age of fourteen I discovered writing as an escape from a world of reality in which I felt acutely uncomfortable.
  2. I’m a poet. And then I put the poetry in the drama. I put it in short stories, and I put it in the plays. Poetry’s poetry. It doesn’t have to be called a poem, you know.
  3. When I write I don’t aim to shock people, and I’m surprised when I do. But I don’t think that anything that occurs in life should be omitted from art, though the artist should present it in a fashion that is artistic and not ugly. I set out to tell the truth. And sometimes the truth is shocking.
  4. If I got rid of my demons, I’d lose my angels.
  5. The theatre is a place where one has time for the problems of people to whom one would show the door if they came to one’s office for a job.
  6. I don’t have an audience in mind when I write. I’m writing mainly for myself. After a long devotion to playwriting I have a good inner ear. I know pretty well how a thing is going to sound on the stage, and how it will play. I write to satisfy this inner ear and its perceptions. That’s the audience I write for.
  7. What shouldn’t you do if you’re a young playwright? Don’t bore the audience!
  8. I believe the way to write a good play is to convince yourself it is easy to do—then go ahead and do it with ease. Don’t maul, don’t suffer, don’t groan till the first draft is finished.
  9. We are all sentenced to solitary confinement inside our own skins, for life.
  10. The strongest influences in my life and my work are always whomever I love. Whomever I love and am with most of the time, or whomever I remember most vividly. I think that’s true of everyone, don’t you?

Tennessee Williams was an American playwright who also wrote short stories, novels, poetry, essays, screenplays, and memoirs. His plays are regarded as classics of the American stage and include A Streetcar Named Desire and The Glass Menagerie. Williams adapted much of his best known work for the cinema.

Source for Image: Orlando Fernandez, World Telegram staff photographer, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

by Amanda Patterson

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Posted on: 26th March 2013