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James Patterson Quotes

James Patterson Sayings

James Patterson quotes: insights on reading, writing, and wealth from the pound-for-pound publishing champ, author James Patterson.

“I write first thing in the morning, about 360 days a year.”

“People like to talk more than they like to act.  They like to sit there and complain and vent.  Somehow they think that changes things, when it doesn’t.”

“The weird, weird thing about devastating loss is that life actually goes on.  When you’re faced with a tragedy, a loss so huge that you have no idea how you can live through it, somehow, the world keeps turning, the seconds keep ticking.”

“I don’t smile as much as I should, even though I smile inside a lot.”

“As we go through this transition where a lot more people will be reading on devices, nobody is paying enough attention to make sure it’s a smooth transition.  I believe we still need places where people can go to handle, hold, and talk about books… and get information about what books are out there, and so on.”

“I never miss a good chance to shut up.”

“The act of laughing releases some nice chemical into your brain; you feel good and it’s free.”

“Bad stuff happens.  Sometimes it makes no sense at all.  Sometimes its unfair.  Sometimes, it just plain sucks.  Bad stuff happens sometimes.  Always remember that, but remember that you have to move on somehow.  You just pick your head up and stare at something beautiful like the sky, or the ocean, and you move the hell on.”

“Nowhere will you meet more interesting people than in books.”

“It’s our job – as parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles – to find books our kids are going to like.”

“Failure isn’t falling down; it’s staying down.”

“You see, one of the best things about reading is that you’ll always have something to think about when you’re not reading.”

“Another day.  Get up and face it.”

“For a long time it had seemed to me that life was about to begin – real life.  But there was always some obstacle in the way, something to be gotten through first, some unfinished business, time still to be served, a debt to be paid.  Then life would begin.  At last, it dawned on me that these obstacles were my life.”

“If I’m writing and a chapter isn’t coming, I just move ahead.”

“Never underestimate the power of funny; it moves mountains.”

“Knowledge is a terrible burden.  It may help you, but it might also destroy you.”

“Life is hard, and a lot of people come home tired from work.  If they’re gonna spend half an hour reading, they want some entertainment and a sense of achievement.  So that’s what I give them.  That’s all I’m trying to do.  Is that really so wrong?”

“Better readers are better thinkers.”

“When I was 26 I wrote my first mystery, The Thomas Berryman Number, and it was turned down by, I dunno, 31 publishers.  Then it won an Edgar for Best First Novel.  Go figure.”

“Life is such a miracle, a series of small miracles.  It really is, if you learn how to look at it with the right perspective.”

“When I write I pretend I’m telling a story to someone in the room and I don’t want them to get up until I’m finished.”

“But what is life if you don’t live it?”

“There are reasons people seek escape in books, and one of those reasons is that the boundary of what can happen is beyond what we do, or would want to see, in real life.”

“Stop trying to write sentences and start trying to write stories.”

“You’re lucky if you find something you like to do, and it’s a miracle if somebody will pay you to do it.”

“Sometimes a happy delusion is better than a grim reality.”

“Reading is not work, not a chore, not drudgery; reading is the most joyful thing, yet, in the world.”

“I guess I write for five hours a day, but I do it seven days a week.  It’s very disciplined, yes, but it’s joy for me.”

“Is it important to be right or to do what’s right?  That’s one of the hardest lessons to learn.”

“Somebody said the key to life is to work hard, play hard, rest hard, and I’ve pretty much adopted that.”

“If you’re not reading – with your heart as well as your brain – you will be one stupid grown-up.”

“Your mind creates your reality.  If you expect nothing, you open up the universe to give you options.  If you expect the worst, you usually get it.”

“I do 30 to 40 books a year, so it’s a fair amount of reading.  Back and forth between nonfiction and fiction.  I usually have three or four things that are open on my desk, on my bed, on audiobook in the car.”

“The funny thing about facing imminent death is that it really snaps everything else into perspective.”

“I don’t believe in lecturing people.  It’s much more effective to present reading as a fun, rewarding pastime.”

“Imagine life is a game in which you are juggling five balls.  The balls are called work, family, health, friends, and integrity.  And you’re keeping all of them in the air.  But one day you finally come to understand that work is a rubber ball.  If you drop it, it will bounce back.  The other four balls… are made of glass.  If you drop one of these, it will be irrevocably scuffed, nicked, perhaps even shattered.”

“My style is colloquial storytelling.  It’s the way we tell stories to one another.  It’s not writerly, it’s not overdone.”

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