18+ quotes from The Ghost Writer by Philip Roth

Quotes from The Ghost Writer

Philip Roth ·  179 pages

Rating: (7.9K votes)


“I turn sentences around. That's my life. I write a sentence and then I turn it around. Then I look at it and turn it around again...”
― Philip Roth, quote from The Ghost Writer


“In my childhood I led the life of a sage, when I grew up I started climbing trees”
― Philip Roth, quote from The Ghost Writer


“I turn sentences around. That’s my life. I write a sentence and then I turn it around. Then I look at it and I turn it around again. Then I have lunch. Then I come back in and write another sentence. Then I have tea and turn the new sentence around. Then I read the two sentences over and turn them both around. Then I lie down on my sofa and think. Then I get up and throw them out and start from the beginning. And if I knock off from this routine for as long as a day, I’m frantic with boredom and a sense of waste.”
― Philip Roth, quote from The Ghost Writer


“I felt as though the skin had been peeled away from half of my body. Half my face had been peeled away, and everybody would stare in horror for the rest of my life. Or they would stare at the other half, at the half still intact; I could see them smiling, pretending that the flayed half wasn't there, and talking to the half that was. And I could hear my self screaming at them, I could see myself thrusting my hideous side right up into their unmarred faces to make them properly horrified. 'I was pretty! I was whole! I was sunny, lively little girl! Look, look at what they did to me!' But whatever side they looked at, I would always be screaming, 'Look at the other! Why don't you look at the other!' That's what I thought about in the hospital at night. However they look at me, however they talk to me, however they try to comfort me, I will always be this half-flayed thing. I will never be young, I will never be kind or at peace or in love, and I will hate them all my life.”
― Philip Roth, quote from The Ghost Writer


“There is his religion of art, my young successor: rejecting life! Not living is what he makes his beautiful fiction out of! And you will now be the person he is not living with!”
― Philip Roth, quote from The Ghost Writer


“Because you happen to be a writer doesn’t mean you have to deny yourself the ordinary human pleasure of being praised and applauded.”
― Philip Roth, quote from The Ghost Writer


“I don’t know anybody. I turn sentences around, and that’s it.”
― Philip Roth, quote from The Ghost Writer


“Great artists, as history reveals, have been harshly persecuted time and again by the frightened and ill-educated,”
― Philip Roth, quote from The Ghost Writer


“the joy of awakening each morning knowing there were all those empty hours ahead to be filled only with work.”
― Philip Roth, quote from The Ghost Writer


“He winced when he stood--lumbago, he explained, from turning one too many sentences arounder that day--and said that he still his evening's reading. He did not do justice to a writer unless he read him on consecutive days and for no less than three hours at a sitting. Otherwise, despite his note taking and underlining, he lost touch with a book's inner life and might as well not have begun. Sometimes, when he unavoidably had to miss a day, he would go back and begin all over again, rather than be nagged by his sense that he was wronginger a serious author.”
― Philip Roth, quote from The Ghost Writer


“No one with seven books in New York City settles for one piece of ass. That’s what you get for a couplet.”
― Philip Roth, quote from The Ghost Writer


“doubt is our passion and our passion is our task. The rest is the madness of art.”
― Philip Roth, quote from The Ghost Writer


“It is not our high purposes alone that make us moving creatures, but our humble needs and cravings.”
― Philip Roth, quote from The Ghost Writer


“Não poderia deixar de adorar aquele homem sem ilusões: adorar a franqueza, o escrúpulo, a severidade, o isolamento; admirar a implacável repressão do ego infantil, a insaciável busca de aperfeiçoamento; admirar a teimosia artística e a desconfiança quanto a tudo mais; admirar o encanto oculto, do qual ele acabava de me proporcionar uma rápida visão.”
― Philip Roth, quote from The Ghost Writer


“It's no picnic up there in the egosphere.”
― Philip Roth, quote from The Ghost Writer


“I know the kind of man I am and the kind of writer. I have my own kind of bravery, and please, let’s leave it at that.”
― Philip Roth, quote from The Ghost Writer


“I'll be curious to see how we all come out someday. It could be an interesting story. You're not so nice and polite in your fiction," he said. "You're a different person.”
― Philip Roth, quote from The Ghost Writer


“La gente non legge pensando all'arte: legge pensando alle persone. E le giudica per quello che sono. E come credi che giudicherà i personaggi del tuo racconto? A quali conclusioni credi che arriverà? Ci hai pensato?”
― Philip Roth, quote from The Ghost Writer


About the author

Philip Roth
Born place: in Newark, New Jersey, The United States
Born date March 19, 1933
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