Henry Green

Literary Birthday – 29 October – Henry Green

Henry Green was born 29 October 1905, and died 13 December 1973.


  1. I suppose the more you leave out, the more you highlight what you leave in … but if one kept a diary, one wouldn’t want a minute-to-minute catalogue of one’s dreadful day.
  2. To me the purpose of art is to produce something alive…but with a separate, and of course one hopes, with an everlasting life of its own.
  3. It is simply that the novelist is a communicator and must therefore be interested in any form of communication. Media change. We don’t have to paint chapels like Cocteau, but at the same time we must all be ever on the lookout for the new ways.
  4. The writer must be disengaged or else he is writing politics.
  5. [The writer] can’t do anything else. His style is himself, and we are all of us changing every day—developing, we hope! We leave our marks behind us, like a snail.
  6. The miracle is that a work of art should live in the person who reads it.
  7. Surely the artist must entertain. And one’s in a very bad way indeed if one can’t laugh. Laughter relaxes the characters in a novel. And if you can make the reader laugh, he is apt to get careless and go on reading. So you as the writer get a chance to get something into him.
  8. If you are trying to write something which has a life of its own, which is alive, of course the author must keep completely out of the picture.

Henry Green was an English author best remembered for the novels Party Going and Loving.

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by Amanda Patterson

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Posted on: 29th October 2014