Make your own worlds. Make your own laws. Make your own creations, your own star systems. Don't feel answerable to anyone, or as though you have to create after some preordained model. You don't have to write like myself, or King or Anne Rice: be yourself. Nothing is more wonderful than discovering a new voice, particularly if it happens to be your own.
Of course it's the apparently tranquil periods that deceive us. Though our instruments or our senses or our wits may not be able to see the processes that are leading toward these clusters of events, they're happening. The star, the wheel, the butterfly""all are in a subtle state of unrest, waiting for the moment when some invisible mechanism signals that the time has come. Then the star explodes; the wheel makes poor men rich; the butterfly mates and dies.
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In this sense love is of a different order to any other phenomenon, for it may be both an event and a sign of that invisible mechanism I spoke of before; perhaps the finest sign, the most certain. In it's throes we need neither luck nor science. We are the wheel, and the man who profits by it. We are the star, and the darkness it pierces. We are the butterfly, brief and beautiful.
Mutilation is the badge that can never be taken off, and sets us apart from all others. Pain is important to the bonding-a physical horror that bonds us ever tighter to all those who have partaken. The intensity of the experience helps to widen the gulf between us and those who have not shared.
It is great good health to believe as the Hindus do that there are 33 million gods and goddesses in the world. It is great good health to want to understand one s dreams. It is great good health to desire the ambiguous and paradoxical. It is sickness of the profoundest kind to believe that there is one reality. There is sickness in any piece of work or any piece of art seriously attempting to suggest that the idea that there is more than one reality is somehow redundant.
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There is no such thing as originality. It has all been said before, suffered before. If a person knows that, is it any wonder love becomes mechanical and death just a scene to be shunned? There is no absolute knowledge to be gained from either. Just another ride on the merry-go-round, another blurred scene of faces smiling and faces grieved.
The moon had risen behind him, the color of a shark's underbelly. It lit the ruined walls, and the skin of his arms and hands, with its sickly light, making him long for a mirror in which to study his face. Surely he'd be able to see the bones beneath the meat; the skull gleaming the way his teeth gleamed when he smiled. After all, wasn't that what a smile said? Hello, world, this is the way I'll look when the wet parts are rotted.
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Evil is never abstract. It is always concrete, always particular and always vested in individuals. To deny monsters as individuals the right to speak, to actually state their case, is perverse - because I want to hear the Devil speak. I like the idea that a point of view can be made by the dark side.
Peter Pan has to be the book of my childhood. Come to think of it, it's the book of my adulthood too. It's a book which, in the reading of it, takes me back to editions that I've had and lost, with various illustrators' work in them. It brings back moments sitting reading it with my mother. It brings back my first contact with the Disney cartoon. It brings back standing in the play-yard when I was a kid, when the wind was really blowing, and closing my eyes, spreading my arms and pretending I could fly. It brings back childhood dreams of flying. It brings back the first encounter I ever had with an invented world... Never Never Land was really the first journey I took to an invented world which I believed in wholly and completely. I remember the immense solidarity that I felt with the Lost Boys, with Peter, with the Indians - how much I wanted to be a Red Indian - how much the saving of Tiger Lily meant to me as a kid, how much I wanted to one day wake up and save an Indian squaw from drowning.
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I don't like to make a distinction between the writer and the painter , finally , because I do both things anyway. Everybody's dreaming and trying to put down their dreams in the way that their hand knows best. I feel as much a unity , as much comradeship , with painters as I do writers.
Those old hypocrites. They talk about killing witches but the Good Book's full of magic. Turning the Nile to blood and parting the Red Sea. What's that if it's not good old-fashioned magic? Want a little water into wine? No trouble! How about raising the dead man Lazarus? Just say the word!
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Zombies are the ideal late twentieth-century monsters. A zombie is the one thing you can't deal with. It survives anything. Frankenstein's monster and Dracula could be sent down in so many ways. Zombies, though, fall outside all this. You can't argue with them. They just keep coming at you.
Zombies are the liberal nightmare. Here you have the masses, whom you would love to love, appearing at your front door with their faces falling off; and you're trying to be as humane as you possibly can, but they are, after all, eating the cat. And the fear of mass activity, of mindlessness on a national scale, underlies my fear of zombies.
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There are things that are more important than the news and what's happening today. There are these archetypes which are part of the human imagination since humans were presumably imaginative. And I think that's what [people] find touching, these eternal ideas. It's one of the things that makes fantasy something that tends to stand the test of time because we're reading, 50 years later, The Lord of the Rings.
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