I've never written a book with an outline or a predetermined theme. It's only in retrospect that themes or subjects become identifiable. That's the fun of it: discovering what's next. I'm often surprised by plot developments I would not have dreamed of starting out, but that, in the course of the writing, come to seem inevitable.
I always want the audience to identify with my character in some way. I mean, sometimes you'll get characters that aren't very identifiable. Sometimes you can't relate to your character at all. I think it's important to keep the audience interested. But the best advice that I've gotten is to live in the moment.
I think of the people who commit these acts as children. They're in their 20s, but like certain children, they have been told only one story, over and over. Like most children, they believe in an easily identifiable good and evil, and like most children, they are capable of unthinkable cruelty.
In my opinion, advocating, allowing and practicing psychiatric and psychoanalytic dogmas within the church is every bit as pagan and heretical (and therefore perilous) as propagating the teachings of some of the most bizarre cults. The only vital difference is that the cults are less dangerous because their errors are more identifiable.
Jay E. Adams
Somalis have made my city of Wilmington, Delaware, [their home] on a smaller scale. There is a large, very identifiable Somali community, i might add if you ever come to the train station with me you'll notice I have great relationships with them because there's an awful lot driving cabs and are friends of mine. For real. I'm not being solicitous. I'm being serious.
I have all the characteristics of a human being: blood, flesh, skin, hair; but not a single, clear, identifiable emotion, except for greed and disgust. Something horrible is happening inside of me and I don't know why. My nightly bloodlust has overflown into my days. I feel lethal, on the verge of frenzy. I think my mask of sanity is about to slip.
Bret Easton Ellis
Researchers looked at news programs on major broadcast and cable networks between 2008 and 2012 and found that of those labeled as domestic terrorists, 81% were identifiable as Muslims - this despite the fact that FBI reports from the period studied revealed that only 6% of domestic terrorist suspects were Muslim.
Character isn't what we think it is or, rather, what we want it to be. It isn't a stable, easily identifiable set of closely related traits, and it only seems that way because of a glitch in the way our brains are organized. Character is more like a bundle of habits and tendencies and interests, loosely bound together and dependent, at certain times, on circumstance and context.
Many of the points made by the antiwar movement have been consciously assimilated by the Pentagon and its lawyers and advisers. Precision weaponry is good in itself, but its ability to discriminate is improving and will continue to improve. Cluster bombs are perhaps not good in themselves, but when they are dropped on identifiable concentrations of Taliban troops, they do have a heartening effect.
You can't have a novel without real, believable people, and once you get into either too theoretical a novel or too philosophical a novel, you get into the dangers that the French novel has discovered in the past 50 or 60 years. And you get into a sort of aridity. No, you have to have real, identifiable people to whom the reader reacts in a way as if they were real people.
We see not only thought as participating in evolution as an anomaly or as an epiphenomenon; but evolution as so reducible to and identifiable with a progress towards thought that the movement of our souls expresses and measures the very stages of progress of evolution itself. Man discovers that he is nothing else than evolution become conscious of itself.
Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
The smart way to build a literary career is you create an identifiable product, then reliably produce that product so people know what they are going to get. That's the smart way to build a career, but not the fun way. Maybe you can think about being less successful and happier. That's an option, too.
Karen Joy Fowler
Like Hemingway and Faulkner, but in an entirely different mode, Fitzgerald had that singular quality without which a writer is not really a writer at all, and that is a voice, a distinct and identifiable voice. This is really not the same thing as a style; a style can be emulated, a voice cannot, and the witty, rueful, elegaic voice gives his work its bright authenticity.
I don't care if it's Bruno Mars or Aerosmith or ZZ Top... it's about songs. 'Paperback Writer,' 'Satisfaction,' 'Cat Scratch Fever,' 'Walk This Way,' all the killer songs in the world start with an identifiable guitar pattern that is basically a bastardization of either honky-tonk or boogie-woogie. And that's in every cool piece of music in the world that you and I love.
Positive self-expectancy is the first, most outwardly identifiable quality of a top-achieving, winning human being. Positive self-expectancy is pure and simple optimism: real enthusiasm for everything you do... [while] expecting the most favorable result from your own actions. There never was a winner who didn't expect to win in advance. Winners understand that life is a self-fulfilling prophecy. And they know that you usually get what you expect in the long run.
The sound is gone. There's nothing left but the insomniac throbbing of crickets. Crickets in the garden, the courtyard, the back courtyard. Close, domestic, identifiable. And those out in the country. Between all of them they raise, little by little, a wall that will keep out the thing that lies waiting for the tiniest crack of silence to steal through. The thing that is feared by all those who are sleepless, those who walk through the night, those who are lonely, children. That thing. The voice of the dead.
Fantasy writing must be grounded in both truth and life experience if it is to work. It can be as inventive and creative as the writer can make it, a whirlwind of images and plot twists, but it cannot be built on a foundation of air. The world must be identifiable with our own, must offer us a frame of reference we can recognize.' 'Fantasy stories work because the writer has interwoven bits and pieces of reality with imagination to form a personal vision.
The American Dream is one of the greatest ideas in the history of human achievement . . . It thrives today in an age when its core components of freedom and opportunity are open to more Americans than ever before. It holds a real, identifiable place in the American heart and mind, and it informs the aspirations of everyone from farmers to software developers, from detectives to bankers, from soldiers to social workers . . . It defines us as a people, even as we add to its meaning with each new chapter in our national experience and our individual actions.
Man is about to be an automaton; he is identifiable only in the computer. As a person of worth and creativity, as a being with an infinite potential, he retreats and battles the forces that make him inhuman. The dissent we witness is a reaffirmation of faith in man; it is protest against living under rules and prejudices and attitudes that produce the extremes of wealth and poverty and that make us dedicated to the destruction of people through arms, bombs, and gases, and that prepare us to think alike and be submissive objects for the regime of the computer.
William O. Douglas
Scientists say every action initiates an equal and opposite reaction. I say that's just the start. I say every action initiates a most unequal and upredictable chain reaction, that every filament of living becomes part of a larger weave, while remaining identifiable. That every line of latitude requires several stripes of longitude to obtain meaning. That every universe is part of a bigger heaven, a heaven of rhythm and geometry, where a heartbeat is the apex of a triangle.
A living body is not a fixed thing but a flowing event, like a flame or a whirlpool: the shape alone is stable, for the substance is a stream of energy going in at one end and out at the other. We are particularly and temporarily identifiable wiggles in a stream that enters us in the form of light, heat, air, water, milk, bread, fruit, beer, beef Stroganoff, caviar, and pate de foie gras. It goes out as gas and excrement - and also as semen, babies, talk, politics, commerce, war, poetry, and music. And philosophy.
Is this Clarissa Fray?" The voice on the other end of the phone sounded familiar, though not immediately identifiable. Clary twirled the phone cord nervously around her finger. "Yeees?" "Hi, I'm one of the knife-carrying hooligans you met last night in Pandemonium? I"m afraid I made a bad impression and was hoping you'd give me a chance to make it up to-" "SIMON!" Clary held the phone away from her ear as he cracked up laughing. "That is so not funny!" "Sure it is. You just don't see the humor." "Jerk." Clary sighed, leaning up against the wall.
They were like an overconstructed novel, each representative of some cul-de-sac of idiolect and stereotype, missing only a handicapped person - No! At Berkeley we say handi capable person - and a Jew and a Hispanic, and an Asian not of the subcontinent, Louis always said. He had once placed a personals ad on Craigslist to recruit for those positions: Diverse social club seeking to make quota requires the services of East Asian, Jew, Hispanic, and handicapable individuals to round out Multicultural Brady Bunch Troupe. All applicants must be visibly identifiable as members of said group. Reformed Jews and ADHDers need not apply.
T. Geronimo Johnson
Racism is both overt and covert. It takes two, closely related forms: individual whites acting against individual blacks, and acts by the total white community against the black community. We call these individual racism and institutional racism. The first consists of overt acts by individuals, which cause death, injury or the violent destruction of property. This type can be recorded by television cameras; it can frequently be observed in the process of commission. The second type is less overt, far more subtle, less identifiable in terms of specific individuals committing the acts. But it is no less destructive of human life. The second type originates in the operation of established and respected forces in the society, and thus receives far less public condemnation than the first type. When white terrorists bomb a black church and kill five black children, that is an act of individual racism, widely deplored by most segments of the society. But when in that same city - Birmingham, Alabama - five hundred black babies die each year because of the lack of proper food, shelter and medical facilities, and thousands more are destroyed and maimed physically, emotionally and intellectually because of conditions of poverty and discrimination in the black community, that is a function of institutional racism. When a black family moves into a home in a white neighborhood and is stoned, burned or routed out, they are victims of an overt act of individual racism which many people will condemn - at least in words. But it is institutional racism that keeps black people locked in dilapidated slum tenements, subject to the daily prey of exploitative slumlords, merchants, loan sharks and discriminatory real estate agents. The society either pretends it does not know of this latter situation, or is in fact incapable of doing anything meaningful about it.
Rarely do wonder tales end unhappily. They triumph over death. The tale begins with "Once upon a time" or "Once there was" and never really ends when it ends. The ending is actually the beginning. The once upon a time is not a past designation but futuristic: the timelessness of the tale and its lack of geographical specificity endow it with utopian connotations - "utopia" in its original meaning designated "no place, " a place that no one had ever envisaged. We form and keep the utopian kernel of the tale safe in our imaginations with hope. The significance of the paradigmatic functions of the wonder tale is that they facilitate recall for teller and listeners. They enable us to store, remember, and reproduce the utopian spirit of the tale and to change it to fit our experiences and desires, owing to the easily identifiable characters who are associated with particular assignments and settings... The characters, settings, and motifs are combined and varied according to specific functions to induce wonder, It is this sense of wonder that distinguished the wonder tales from such other oral tales as the legend, the fable, the anecdote, and the myth; it is clearly the sense of wonder that distinguishes the literary fairy tale from the moral story, novella, sentimental tale, and other modern short literary genres. Wonder causes astonishment, and as manifested in a marvelous object or phenomenon, it is often regarded as a supernatural occurrence and can be an omen or a portent, It gives rise to admiration, fear, awe, and reverence. The Oxford Universal Dictionary states that wonder is "the emotion excited by the perception of something novel and unexpected, or inexplicable; astonishment mingled with perplexity or bewildered curiosity." In the oral wonder tale, we are to wonder about the workings of the universe, where anything can happen at any time, and these happy or fortuitous events are never to be explained. Nor do the characters demand an explanation - they are opportunistic, are encouraged to be so, and if they do not take advantage of the opportunity that will benefit them in their relations with others, they are either dumb or mean-spirited. The tales seek to awaken our regard for the miraculous condition of life and to evoke in a religious sense profound feelings of awe and respect for life as a miraculous process, which can be altered and changed to compensate for the lack of power, wealth, and pleasure that is most people's lot. Lack, deprivation, prohibition, and interdiction motivate people to look for signs of fulfillment and emancipation. In the wonder tales, those who are naive and simple are able to succeed because they are untainted and can recognize the wondrous signs. They have retained their belief in the miraculous condition of nature, revere nature in all its aspects. They have hot been spoiled by conventionalism, power, or rationalism. In contrast to the humble characters, the villains are those who use words intentionally to exploit, control, transfix, incarcerate, and destroy for their benefit. They have no respect or consideration for nature and other human beings, and they actually seek to abuse magic by preventing change and causing everything to be transfixed according to their interests. Enchantment equals petrification. Breaking the spell equals emancipation. The wondrous protagonist wants to keep the process of natural change flowing and indicates possibilities for overcoming the obstacles that prevent other characters or creatures from living in a peaceful and pleasurable way.