Photography by Richard Avedon
By Truman Capote
A conversation is a dialogue, not a monologue. That's why there are so few good conversations: due to scarcity, two intelligent talkers seldom meet.
All literature is gossip.
Even an attorney of moderate talent can postpone doomsday year after year, for the system of appeals that pervades American jurisprudence amounts to a legalistic wheel of fortune, a game of chance, somewhat fixed in the favor of the criminal, that the participants play interminably.
Failure is the condiment that gives success its flavor.
Fame is only good for one thing - they will cash your check in a small town.
Finishing a book is just like you took a child out in the back yard and shot it.
Friendship is a pretty full-time occupation if you really are friendly with somebody. You can't have too many friends because then you're just not really friends.
Holcomb stands on the high wheat plains of western Kansas, a lonesome area that other Kansans call "out there."
I believe more in the scissors than I do in the pencil.
I can see every monster as they come in.
I got this idea of doing a really serious big work-it would be precisely like a novel, with a single difference: Every word of it would be true from beginning to end.
I was eleven, then I was sixteen. Though no honors came my way, those were the lovely years.
Life is a moderately good play with a badly written third act.
Love is a chain of love as nature is a chain of life.
Most contemporary novelists, especially the American and the French, are too subjective, mesmerized by private demons; they're enraptured by their navels and confined by a view that ends with their own toes.
She is pure Alice in Wonderland, and her appearance and demeanor are a nicely judged mix of the Red Queen and a flamingo.
That's not writing, that's typing.
To me, the greatest pleasure of writing is not what it's about, but the inner music that words make.
Venice is like eating an entire box of chocolate liqueurs in one go.
Well, I'm about as tall as a shotgun, and just as noisy.
When God hands you a gift, he also hands you a whip; and the whip is intended for self-flagellation solely.
Writing has laws of perspective, of light and shade just as painting does, or music. If you are born knowing them, fine. If not, learn them. Then rearrange the rules to suit yourself.
Writing stopped being fun when I discovered the difference between good writing and bad and, even more terrifying, the difference between it and true art. And after that, the whip came down.