20+ quotes from The Well of Lost Plots by Jasper Fforde

Quotes from The Well of Lost Plots

Jasper Fforde ·  388 pages

Rating: (33.1K votes)


“After all, reading is arguably a far more creative and imaginative process than writing; when the reader creates emotion in their head, or the colors of the sky during the setting sun, or the smell of a warm summer's breeze on their face, they should reserve as much praise for themselves as they do for the writer - perhaps more.”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“Books may look like nothing more than words on a page, but they are actually an infinitely complex imaginotransference technology that translates odd, inky squiggles into pictures inside your head.”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“Good. Item seven. The had had and that that problem. Lady Cavendish, weren’t you working on this?’

Lady Cavendish stood up and gathered her thoughts. ‘Indeed. The uses of had had and that that have to be strictly controlled; they can interrupt the imaginotransference quite dramatically, causing readers to go back over the sentence in confusion, something we try to avoid.’

‘Go on.’

‘It’s mostly an unlicensed-usage problem. At the last count David Copperfield alone had had had had sixty three times, all but ten unapproved. Pilgrim’s Progress may also be a problem due to its had had/that that ratio.’

‘So what’s the problem in Progress?’

‘That that had that that ten times but had had had had only thrice. Increased had had usage had had to be overlooked, but not if the number exceeds that that that usage.’

‘Hmm,’ said the Bellman, ‘I thought had had had had TGC’s approval for use in Dickens? What’s the problem?’

‘Take the first had had and that that in the book by way of example,’ said Lady Cavendish. ‘You would have thought that that first had had had had good occasion to be seen as had, had you not? Had had had approval but had had had not; equally it is true to say that that that that had had approval but that that other that that had not.’

‘So the problem with that other that that was that…?’

‘That that other-other that that had had approval.’

‘Okay’ said the Bellman, whose head was in danger of falling apart like a chocolate orange, ‘let me get this straight: David Copperfield, unlike Pilgrim’s Progress, had had had, had had had had. Had had had had TGC’s approval?’

There was a very long pause. ‘Right,’ said the Bellman with a sigh, ‘that’s it for the moment. I’ll be giving out assignments in ten minutes. Session’s over – and let’s be careful out there.”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“Fiction wouldn't be much fun without its fair share of scoundrels, and they have to live somewhere.”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“I have the death sentence in seven genres.”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“Failure concentrates the mind wonderfully. If you don't make mistakes, you're not trying hard enough.”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“I got Oedipus off the incest charge--technicality, of course--he didn't know it was his mother at the time. ”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“Who do readers expect to see when they pick up this book? Who has won the Most Troubled Romantic Lead at the BookWorld Awards seventy-seven times in a row? Me. All me.”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“Anything devised by man has bureaucracy, corrpution and error hardwired at inception.”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“Books" - Snell smiled - "are a kind of magic.”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“Prices of semicolons, plot devices, prologues and inciting incidents continued to fall yesterday, lopping twenty points off the TomJones Index.”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“We all aspire to be ourselves, an original character in a litany of fiction so vast that we know we cannot.”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“To take so much punctuation in one hit initially sounds audacious, but perhaps the thief thought no one would notice as most readers never get that far into Ulysses—you will recall the theft of chapter sixty-two from Moby-Dick, where no one noticed?”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“«Silenzio in aula!» strillò il Coniglio Bianco con voce stridula.
«Mozzatele il capo!» strillò la Regina.
Il Re inforcò gli occhiali e si guardò intorno inquieto, per scoprire chi aveva parlato. La Regina gli diede di gomito e fece un cenno nella mia direzione.
«Tu, laggiù!» disse il Re. «Dovrai parlare molto presto, miss, miss...»
«Next» interloquì Coniglio Bianco dopo aver consultato la sua pergamena.
«Come?» replicò il Re un po' confuso. «Abbiamo già finito?»
«No, Vostra Maestà» rispose paziente il Coniglio Bianco «il suo nome è Next. Thursday Next».
«E magari pensi di essere spiritosa?»”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“To avoid a repeat of this near disaster, the Council of Genres took the only course of action open to them to ensure TGC would be too inefficient and unimaginative to pose a threat. They appointed a committee to run it.”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“After all, reading is arguably a far more creative and imaginative process than writing; when the reader creates emotion in their head, or the colors of the sky during the setting sun, or the smell of a warm summer’s breeze on their face, they should reserve as much praise for themselves as they do for the writer—perhaps more.”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“Failure concentrates the mind wonderfully. If you don’t make mistakes, you’re not trying hard enough.” I”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“- Зачем Мэгги мешает нашему счастью? - сердито спросила она. - У нас с моим дорогим Стивеном все было бы просто чудесно, так почему я должна страдать? Я, которая желала всем только добра, особенно Мэгги!
- Это называется "драма", - устало объяснил Хэвишем.”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“Good. Item seven. The had had and that that problem. Lady Cavendish, weren’t you working on this?’ Lady Cavendish stood up and gathered her thoughts. ‘Indeed. The use of had had and that that has to be strictly controlled; they can interrupt the ImaginoTransference quite dramatically, causing readers to go back over the sentence in confusion, something we try to avoid.’ ‘Go on.’ ‘It’s mostly an unlicensed usage problem. At the last count David Copperfield alone had had had had sixty-three times, all but ten unapproved. Pilgrim’s Progress may also be a problem owing to its had had / that that ratio.’ ‘So what’s the problem in Progress?’ ‘That that had that that ten times but had had had had only thrice. Increased had had usage had had to be overlooked but not if the number exceeds that that that usage.’ ‘Hmm,’ said the Bellman. ‘I thought had had had had TGC’s approval for use in Dickens? What’s the problem?’ ‘Take the first had had and that that in the book by way of example,’ explained Lady Cavendish. ‘You would have thought that that first had had had had good occasion to be seen as had, had you not? Had had had approval but had had had not; equally it is true to say that that that that had had approval but that that other that that had not.’ ‘So the problem with that other that that was that—? ‘That that other-other that that had had approval.’ ‘Okay,’ said the Bellman, whose head was in danger of falling apart like a chocolate orange, ‘let me get this straight: David Copperfield, unlike Pilgrim’s Progress, which had had had, had had had had. Had had had had TGC’s approval?’ There was a very long pause.”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


“He handed me a letter. I unfolded it and read:

Dear Mr Spratt,

It has come to our attention that you may be attempting to give up the booze and reconcile with your wife. While we approve of this as a plot device to generate more friction and inner conflicts, we most strongly advise you not to carry it through to a happy reconciliation, as this would put you in direct contravention of Rule 11C of the Union of Sad Loner Detective’s Code, as ratified by the Union of Literary Detectives, and it will ultimately result in your expulsion from the association with subsequent loss of benefits. I trust you will do the decent thing and halt this damaging and abnormal behaviour before it leads to your downfall.

PS. Despite repeated demands, you have failed to drive a classic car or pursue an unusual hobby. Please do so at once or face the consequences.”
― Jasper Fforde, quote from The Well of Lost Plots


About the author

Jasper Fforde
Born place: in London, England, The United Kingdom
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