I will call no being good who is not what I mean when I apply that epithet to my fellow creatures; and if such a creature can sentence me to hell for not so calling him, to hell I will go .
You can’t really succeed with a novel anyway; they’re too big. It’s like city planning. You can’t plan a perfect city because there’s too much going on that you can’t take into account. You can, however, write a perfect sentence now and then. I have.
Sentence every immoral thought for detention and prosecution. Immorality is a powerful gadget that brings down great monuments of success. Don’t entertain immorality.
Every sentence I utter must be understood not as an affirmation but as a question.
[A caution he gives his students, to be wary of dogmatism.]
I liked that sentence then and I like that sentence now but then I had no way of making any sense of it, I could only keep it in my mind’s eye, where it rested and grew in the embryo that would become my imagination