Happy Birthday, J.M. Coetzee, born 9 February 1940.
- Nothing is worse than what we can imagine.
- That has always seemed to me one of the stranger aspects of literary fame: you prove your competence as a writer and an inventor of stories, and then people clamour for you to make speeches and tell them what you think about the world.
- The writers who have the deepest influence on one are those one reads in one’s more impressionable, early life, and often it is the more youthful works of those writers that leave the deepest imprint.
- In my experience poetry speaks to you either at first sight or not at all. A flash of revelation and a flash of response. Like lightning. Like falling in love.
- The idea of writer as sage is pretty much dead today. I would certainly feel very uncomfortable in the role.
- If there were a better, clearer, shorter way of saying what the fiction says, then why not scrap the fiction?
- Our lies reveal as much about us as our truths.
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