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Page 103 - ... inelegant in itself. Repetition is only wrong when it is unintentional, and when, being horrid to the ear, it is reasonably and honestly avoidable. On the other hand, repetition, used with tact and courage, may achieve not merely elegance but positive brilliance. What a phrase — " the initial time " ! FINISHING BOOKS To a novelist who specialises in cases of crime I happened to mention Albert Bataille's Causes Criminelles et Mondaines (18 vols. Paris, 188198). She became enthusiastic about...
Page 56 - And I respectfully request you not to plume yourself on your reading, nor expect to acquire merit thereby. But should you answer: "I do try to translate literature into life", then I will ask you to take down any book at random from your shelves and conduct in your own mind an honest inquiry as to what has been the effect of that particular book on your actual living. If you can put your hand on any subsequent period, or fractional moment, of your life and say: "I acted more wisely then, I wasn't...
Page 210 - I have at least rendered it quite impossible for the stage, for which my intercourse with Drury Lane has given me the greatest contempt.
Page 210 - I much doubt it for publication even. It is too much in my old style ; but I composed it actually with a horror of the stage, and with a view to render the thought of it impracticable, knowing the zeal of my friends that I should try that for which I have an invincible repugnance, viz. a representation.
Page 57 - Well, come along, let's have a look at you!" What is the matter with our reading is casualness, languor, preoccupation. We don't give the book a chance. We don't put ourselves at the disposal of the book. It is impossible to read properly without using all one's engine-power. If we are not tired after reading, common sense is not in us. How should one grapple with a superior and not be out of breath?
Page 325 - Don't be hard on me — simplifying and chastening necessity has laid its brutal hand on me and I have had to try to make somehow or other the money I don't make by literature. My books don't sell, and it looks as if my plays might. Therefore I am going with a brazen front to write half a dozen.
Page 56 - I only read for pleasure", then I retort that the man who drinks whiskey might with force say: "I only drink whiskey for pleasure". And I respectfully request you not to plume yourself on your reading, nor expect to acquire merit thereby. But should you answer: "I do try to translate literature into life", then I will ask you to take down any book at random from your shelves and conduct in your own mind an honest inquiry as to what has been the effect of that particular book on your actual living....
Page 58 - ... Reading without subsequent reflection is ridiculous; it is equally a proof of folly and of vanity. Further, it is a sign of undue selfesteem to suppose that we can grasp the full import of an author's message at a single reading. I would not say that every book worth reading once is worth reading twice. But I would say that no book of great and established reputation is read till it is read at least twice. You can easily test the truth of this by reading again any classic; assuredly you will...
Page 129 - But, sir, it is not alone Members of Congress that the war party in this country has sought to intimidate. The mandate seems to have gone forth to the sovereign people of this country that they must be silent while those things are being done by their Government which most vitally concern their well-being, their happiness, and their lives. Today and for weeks past honest and law-abiding citizens of this country...