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Alice McDermott Quotes

Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results
I told you I'll be ready in FIVE minutes, stop calling me every half hour
Having you in my life made everything better
Together is my favorite place to be
If cats could talk, they wouldn't
A true friend is someone who accepts your past, supports your present and encourages your future
You don't need someone to complete you. You only need someone to accept you completely
Chocolate is the answer. Who cares what the question is
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I think ‘Charming Billy’ ultimately is a novel about faith and what we believe in and, above all, what we choose to believe in.  (Alice McDermott Quotes) What interests me is whatever it is that allows the heart to continue to yearn for something the intelligence knows is impossible to have: a lost love, a shelter from life’s blows, the return of a time past, even a connection to the dead.  (Alice McDermott Quotes) I do have friends in Pittsburgh, and I had some wonderful experiences there  (Alice McDermott Quotes) All my friends had grandparents who had accents. I thought all grandparents were supposed to have accents. My friends were all second-generation, as I was.  (Alice McDermott Quotes) At the beginning of every semester, I ask my graduate students whether there is something I should read that will help me understand their work.  (Alice McDermott Quotes) I’m always telling my students, don’t - don’t worry so much third person, first person. It doesn’t make that much difference.  (Alice McDermott Quotes) I’m more interested in character than events. I’ve observed that about myself as a writer. I find events, even the most dramatic sort, not to be such fertile ground.  (Alice McDermott Quotes) For immigrant generations especially, family is the first structure, or shelter, for a people who are in exile.  (Alice McDermott Quotes) For me, having characters who are part of a faith then allows me to talk about how that faith either works or fails them without having to attack the institution.  (Alice McDermott Quotes) I believe that the interior life is the same for all of us. And because they’re steeped in faith, Irish-American Catholics are a people who have a language for the examined life.  (Alice McDermott Quotes) I believed in fictional characters as if they were a part of real life. Poetry was important, too. My parents had memorized poems from their days attending school in New York City and loved reciting them. We all enjoyed listening to these poems and to music as well.  (Alice McDermott Quotes) I was the youngest; I had two imperious older brothers - I didn’t get to often complete sentences at the dinner table. So writing was a way of saying what nobody asked me to say.  (Alice McDermott Quotes) Family dynamics are true over time, across generations and different cultures  (Alice McDermott Quotes) As a writer, you have to put yourself in service to the character, get behind their eyes by delineating the world where the character develops. You have to listen to the character and see him inside his certain world to know what conclusions he would draw.  (Alice McDermott Quotes) Much of my experience with language was formed in the church, which has an oral tradition. There are lots of repetitions in prayers and song refrains. There’s a sense of incantation, that if you call not once and not twice but for a third time, the spirit appears.  (Alice McDermott Quotes) I am trying to cultivate the notion that constantly misplacing one’s cell phone is a charming eccentricity... my children aren’t buying it.  (Alice McDermott Quotes) The language of the Catholic Church - the liturgy, the prayer, the gospels - was in many ways my first poetry.  (Alice McDermott Quotes) I read a little bit of nonfiction and a lot of poetry. I think of poetry as my shot of whiskey when I don’t have time to savor a whole bottle of wine.  (Alice McDermott Quotes) I like that original romance of having a pen and a legal pad and going anywhere in the world and being able to write a novel with just those two things.  (Alice McDermott Quotes) In the act of reading, especially reading fiction, where a world is being created, all kinds of matters of belief come into play  (Alice McDermott Quotes) I’m interested in characters who should know better, who know they should give up, move on, accept life as it is, with all its constraints - life, death, time - but don’t  (Alice McDermott Quotes) I’m always telling my students, don’t - don’t worry so much third person, first person. It doesn’t make that much difference  (Alice McDermott Quotes) A good writer sells out everybody he knows, sooner or later  (Alice McDermott Quotes) The writing itself is the thing that generates stories for me  (Alice McDermott Quotes) Guilt is glorious when it’s well earned  (Alice McDermott Quotes) A book tour is, first and foremost, an exercise in humility  (Alice McDermott Quotes) The lesson, I suppose, is that none of us have much control over how we will be remembered. Every life is an amalgam, and it is impossible to know what moments, what foibles, what charms will come to define us once we’re gone. All we can do is live our lives fully, be authentically ourselves, and trust that the right things about us, the best and most fitting things, will echo in the memories of us that endure  (Alice McDermott Quotes) When I’m not writing, I can’t make sense of out anything. I feel the need to make some sense and find some order, and writing fiction is the only way I’ve found that seems to begin to do that  (Alice McDermott Quotes) The world was a cruder, more vulgar place than the one I had known. This was the language required to live in it, I supposed  (Alice McDermott Quotes) We are at the mercy of time, and for all the ways we are remembered, a sea of things will be lost. But how much is contained in what lingers!  (Alice McDermott Quotes)