The average man is a conformist, accepting miseries and disasters with the stoicism of a cow standing in the rain.
The mind has exactly the same power as the hands; not merely to grasp the world, but to change it.
Criminals interest me, because they're driven by the same desires as we are, but they take these disastrous shortcuts and end up in a real mess.
Whereas in the past optimism had been regarded as rather shallow - because 'oh well, it's just your temperament, you happen to be just a cheerful sort of person' - what I wanted to do was to establish that in fact it is the pessimists who are allowing all kinds of errors to creep into their work.
Being very famous is not the fun it sounds. It merely means you're being chased by a lot of people and you lose your privacy.
A symphony is a stage play with the parts written for instruments instead of for actors.
I'm basically a writer of ideas, and the English aren't interested in ideas. The English, I'm afraid, are totally brainless.
The complex develops out of the simple.
When I was a teenager I was a total romantic escapist. My world was books.
If you asked me what is the basis of all my work, it's the feeling there's something basically wrong with human beings.
What I wanted to do was to try to create a philosophy upon a completely new foundation.
I've always been a pretty hard worker. That's how I've written over a hundred books.
If I'd stayed on in London and carried on going to literary parties, it would have wrecked me as a writer.
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