Literary Birthday – 3 September – Lawrence Clark Powell

Lawrence Clark Powell was born 3 September 1906 and died 14 March 2001.

Nine Quotes

  1. The good writer, the great writer, has what I have called the three S’s: the power to see, to sense, and to say. That is, he is perceptive, he is feeling, and he has the power to express in language what he observes and reacts to.
  2. Write to be understood, speak to be heard, read to grow.
  3. I have always been reconciled to the fact that I was born a bibliomaniac, never have I sought a cure, and my dearest friends have been drawn from those likewise suffering from book madness.
  4. Unless their use by readers bring them to life, books are indeed dead things.
  5. A book is one of the most patient of all man’s inventions. Centuries mean nothing to a well-made book.
  6. I can speak of my own criterion for judging whether or not a book is good or bad. I ask of it a single question, From how deep and true an impulse did it spring? Was it written merely to shock? Only to make money? Or was it written to create something more perfect and more lasting than the life experience from which it came?
  7. No university in the world has ever risen to greatness without a correspondingly great library.
  8. To achieve lasting literature, fictional or factual, a writer needs perceptive vision, absorptive capacity, and creative strength.
  9. Books are islands in the ocean of time. They are also oases in the deserts of time.

Lawrence Clark Powell was an American librarian, literary critic, bibliographer, and author. He wrote more than 100 books, including Books in My Baggage. Adventures in Reading and Collecting, The Blue Train and An Orange Grove Boyhood.

Source for quotes


Associated Students, University of California, Los Angeles, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

by Amanda Patterson

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Posted on: 2nd September 2017