On the Art of Writing (1916) by Arthur Quiller-Couch & the Dark Age of Lord Coke

“Well, in this extraneous, professional, purchased ornamentation, you have something which Style is not: and if you here require a practical rule of me, I will present you with this: ‘Whenever you feel an impulse to perpetrate a piece of exceptionally fine writing, obey it—whole-heartedly—and delete it before sending your manuscript to press. Murder your darlings’” (On the Art of Writing Well p 203).

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Haroun and Luka (2013) by Salman Rushdie & the Great Storytelling Animal

“There are places in the world where nothing ever happens, and Time stops moving altogether…There are those of us who learn to live completely in the moment. For such people the Past vanishes and the Future loses meaning. There is only the Present, which means that two of the three Aalim are surplus to requirement. And there are those of us who are trapped in yesterdays, in the memory of a lost love, or a childhood home, or a dreadful crime. And some people live only for a better tomorrow; for them the Past ceases to exist” (p 189-190).

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The Apple of My Eye (2014) by Mary Ellen Bramwell & the Suspicious Nature of Heroism

“I wondered how anyone could be sleeping at a moment like this, but I knew their lives were not hanging on what was happening at the hospital a few miles away. They could not feel my anguish nor see the concern in my eyes. They would wake up in the morning as if nothing had happened and make their breakfasts and go to work or school or take care of their children as if the day were like any other. But it wouldn’t be, and I knew it, regardless of what greeted me ahead” (p 21).

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A Room with a View (1908) by E.M. Forster & the Music of our Hearts

“And she was tragical only in the sense that she was great, for she loved to play on the side of Victory. Victory of what and over what—that is more than the words of daily life can tell us. But that some sonatas of Beethoven are written tragic no one can gainsay; yet they can triumph or despair as the player decides, and Lucy had decided that they should triumph” (p 34-35).

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