Entertainment

30 Pieces Of Wisdom From Authors

While authors are often cursed with a myriad of problems (suffering for their art is mostly unavoidable), they're also intimidatingly talented folk, full of creativity and smarts.

This is mainly funnelled into their work but it's also blessed us with a selection of perfectly realised nuggets of life-improving wisdom.

Here are 30 of the very best:

(Images: Rex Features, Getty)

  • Aldous Huxley

    Aldous Huxley

    "An intellectual is a person who's found one thing… More details

    Aldous Huxley

    Aldous Huxley

    "An intellectual is a person who's found one thing that's more interesting than sex."

  • Anne Rice

    Anne Rice

    "Evil is always possible. Goodness is a… More details

    Anne Rice

    Anne Rice

    "Evil is always possible. Goodness is a difficulty."

  • Anthony Burgess

    Anthony Burgess

    "One of the delights known to age, and beyond the… More details

    Anthony Burgess

    Anthony Burgess

    "One of the delights known to age, and beyond the grasp of youth, is that of Not Going."

  • Bret Easton Ellis

    Bret Easton Ellis

    "Life is like a typographical error: we're constantly… More details

    Bret Easton Ellis

    Bret Easton Ellis

    "Life is like a typographical error: we're constantly writing and rewriting things over each other."

  • Daphne Du Maurier

    Daphne Du Maurier

    "Women want love to be a novel, men a short… More details

    Daphne Du Maurier

    Daphne Du Maurier

    "Women want love to be a novel, men a short story."

  • Charles Dickens

    Charles Dickens

    "Have a heart that never hardens, and a temper that… More details

    Charles Dickens

    Charles Dickens

    "Have a heart that never hardens, and a temper that never tires, and a touch that never hurts."

  • Chuck Palahniuk

    Chuck Palahniuk

    "If you love something set it free, but don't be… More details

    Chuck Palahniuk

    Chuck Palahniuk

    "If you love something set it free, but don't be surprised if it comes back with herpes."

  • Donna Tartt

    Donna Tartt

    "I think innocence is something that adults project… More details

    Donna Tartt

    Donna Tartt

    "I think innocence is something that adults project upon children that's not really there."

  • Ernest Hemingway

    Ernest Hemingway

    "Always do sober what you said you'd do drunk. That… More details

    Ernest Hemingway

    Ernest Hemingway

    "Always do sober what you said you'd do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut."

  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez

    Gabriel Garcia Marquez

    "It is not true that people stop pursuing dreams… More details

    Gabriel Garcia Marquez

    Gabriel Garcia Marquez

    "It is not true that people stop pursuing dreams because they grow old, they grow old because they stop pursuing dreams."

  • Erica Jong

    Erica Jong

    "Advice is what we ask for when we already know the… More details

    Erica Jong

    Erica Jong

    "Advice is what we ask for when we already know the answer but wish we didn't."

  • George Orwell

    George Orwell

    "Every generation imagines itself to be more… More details

    George Orwell

    George Orwell

    "Every generation imagines itself to be more intelligent than the one that went before it, and wiser than the one that comes after it."

  • Ian McEwan

    Ian McEwan

    "No one knows anything, really. It's all rented, or… More details

    Ian McEwan

    Ian McEwan

    "No one knows anything, really. It's all rented, or borrowed."

  • J D Salinger

    J D Salinger

    "All morons hate it when you call them a moron." More details

    J D Salinger

    J D Salinger

    "All morons hate it when you call them a moron."

  • Jack Kerouac

    Jack Kerouac

    "Great things are not accomplished by those who yield… More details

    Jack Kerouac

    Jack Kerouac

    "Great things are not accomplished by those who yield to trends and fads and popular opinion."

  • John Grisham

    John Grisham

    "You live your life today, Not tommorow, and certainly… More details

    John Grisham

    John Grisham

    "You live your life today, Not tommorow, and certainly not yesterday."

  • Jonathan Franzen

    Jonathan Franzen

    "We may freak out globally, but we suffer… More details

    Jonathan Franzen

    Jonathan Franzen

    "We may freak out globally, but we suffer locally."

  • Kurt Vonnegut

    Kurt Vonnegut

    "If people think nature is their friend, then they… More details

    Kurt Vonnegut

    Kurt Vonnegut

    "If people think nature is their friend, then they sure don't need an enemy."

  • Margaret Atwood

    Margaret Atwood

    "War is what happens when language fails." More details

    Margaret Atwood

    Margaret Atwood

    "War is what happens when language fails."

  • Mario Puzo

    Mario Puzo

    "Never hate your enemies. It affects your… More details

    Mario Puzo

    Mario Puzo

    "Never hate your enemies. It affects your judgment."

  • Mark Twain

    Mark Twain

    "Good friends, good books, and a sleepy conscience:… More details

    Mark Twain

    Mark Twain

    "Good friends, good books, and a sleepy conscience: this is the ideal life."

  • Oscar Wilde

    Oscar Wilde

    "Be yourself; everyone else is already taken." More details

    Oscar Wilde

    Oscar Wilde

    "Be yourself; everyone else is already taken."

  • Paolo Coelho

    Paolo Coelho

    "You drown not by falling into a river, but by staying… More details

    Paolo Coelho

    Paolo Coelho

    "You drown not by falling into a river, but by staying submerged in it."

  • Maya Angelou

    Maya Angelou

    "I've learned that people will forget what you said,… More details

    Maya Angelou

    Maya Angelou

    "I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel."

  • Philip Roth

    Philip Roth

    "Just like those who are incurably ill, the aged know… More details

    Philip Roth

    Philip Roth

    "Just like those who are incurably ill, the aged know everything about their dying except exactly when."

  • Richard Yates

    Richard Yates

    "Most human beings are inescapably alone, and therein… More details

    Richard Yates

    Richard Yates

    "Most human beings are inescapably alone, and therein lies their tragedy."

  • Roald Dahl

    Roald Dahl

    "A little nonsense now and then is relished by the… More details

    Roald Dahl

    Roald Dahl

    "A little nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest men."

  • Stephen King

    Stephen King

    "If you liked being a teenager, there's something… More details

    Stephen King

    Stephen King

    "If you liked being a teenager, there's something really wrong with you."

  • Vladimir Nabokov

    Vladimir Nabokov

    "Literature and butterflies are the two sweetest… More details

    Vladimir Nabokov

    Vladimir Nabokov

    "Literature and butterflies are the two sweetest passions known to man."

  • William Golding

    William Golding

    "What a man does defiles him, not what is done by… More details

    William Golding

    William Golding

    "What a man does defiles him, not what is done by others."

Tags: books

Share on

or email.

  • Facebook
  • Digg
  • Delicious

Add a comment

Follow Shortlist on Twitter

Ballot Box

Who will be the next permanent manager of Manchester United?

Who will be the next permanent manager of Manchester United?

Ballot Box

Do you get angry over spoilers?

Do you get angry over spoilers?

Ballot Box

Which high-end piece of tech would you most like to buy?

Which high-end piece of tech would you most like to buy?

Find Shortlist on Facebook