Home > Miscellaneous >


The only reason for the existence of a novel is that it does attempt to represent life.

Henry James (1843-1916) American author.

Fiction is like a spider's web, attached ever so lightly perhaps, but still attached to life at all four corners. Often the attachment is scarcely perceptible.

Virginia Woolf (1882-1941) British novelist and essayist.

One should not be too severe on English novels; they are the only relaxation of the intellectually unemployed.

Oscar Wilde (1854-1900) Irish poet and dramatist.

The good ended happily, and the bad unhappily. That is what Fiction means.

Oscar Wilde (1854-1900) Irish poet and dramatist.

The acceptance that all that is solid has melted into the air, that reality and morality are not givens but imperfect human constructs, is the point from which fiction begins.

Salman Rushdie (1948-?) Anglo-Indian novelist.


The time-honored bread-sauce of the happy ending.

Henry James (1843-1916) American author.

Would you not like to try all sorts of lives -- one is so very small -- but that is the satisfaction of writing -- one can impersonate so many people.

Katherine Mansfield (1888-1923) New Zealand-born English short story writer.

The really great novel tends to be the exact negative of its author's life.

André Maurois (1885-1967) French writer.

Novelists are perhaps the last people in the world to be entrusted with opinions. The nature of a novel is that it has no opinions, only the dialectic of contrary views, some of which, all of which, may be untenable and even silly. A novelist should not be too intelligent either, although he may be permitted to be an intellectual.

Anthony Burgess (1917-1933) English author.

When writing a novel a writer should create living people; people not characters. A character is a caricature.

Ernest Hemingway (1898-1961) American Writer.