I think young writers should get other degrees first, social sciences, arts degrees or even business degrees. What you learn is research skills, a necessity because a lot of writing is about trying to find information.— Irvine Welsh
The most delightful Irvine Welsh quotes that are life-changing and eye-opening
By definition, you have to live until you die.
Better to make that life as complete and enjoyable an experience as possible, in case death is shite, which I suspect it will be.
Choose life … I chose not to choose life.
I chose something else. And the reasons? There are no reasons. Who needs reasons when you’ve got heroin?
I'm working on a screenplay right now for the BBC, but I hope to have the decks cleared soon so I can get into the studio with my pals and put down some more tracks, try to get a strong dance single together.
When you're not doing so well, vote for a better life for yourself. If you are doing quite nicely, vote for a better life for others.
I'd always done a lot of sniffing glue as a kid.
I was very interested in glue, and then I went to lager and speed, and I drifted into heroin because as a kid growing up everybody told me, 'don't smoke marijuana, it will kill you'.
His eyes are wild, psychotic slits that bat-dance in your soul looking for good things to crush or bad elements to identify with.
But even Es and cocaine, over the years they blow holes in your brain, rob you of your memories, your past. Which is fair enough, convenient even.
I'm more of a warrior than you'll ever be.
I believe in the class war. I believe in the battle of the sexes. I believe in my tribe. I believe in the righteous, intelligent clued-up section of the working classes against the brain-dead moronic masses as well as the mediocre, soulless bourgeoisie.
There's that horrible-beautiful moment, that bitter-sweet impasse where you know that somebody is bullshitting you but they're doing it with such panache and conviction...no, it's because they say exactly what you want to hear, at that point in time.
don't let jesus in. AA is just one obsession replaced with another
The inspiration can come in such small ways that if you sit there just waiting for the big epiphany you'll sit there for the rest of your life.
It was the books I started reading. It was the music I started listening to. It was the television I started watching. I found myself thinking again. I tried to stop because it was only causing pain. I couldn't. Wen all this is in your head it has to come out into your life. If it doesn't, you get crushed. I'm not going to get crushed.
I wanted to capture the excitement of house music, almost like a four-four beat, and the best way to do that was to use a language that was rhythmic and performative.
Now, for the first time, he's seeing that there really is a way out of this, and it's all so simple. You don't have to run away. You just meet somebody special and step sideways into a parallel universe.
The books that are really valuable are the books that evoke a sense of place.
I grew up in a place where everybody was a storyteller, but nobody wrote.
It was that kind of Celtic, storytelling tradition: everybody would have a story at the pub or at parties, even at the clubs and raves.
Sometimes ah think that people become junkies just because they subconsciously crave a wee bit ay silence.
Everything in the street today seems soft focus.
I'd always liked to read, but when I picked up books I wasn't getting the same kind of excitement from them that I was from going out clubbing. I wanted to get the same kind of feel.
Bad luck is usually transmitted by close proximity to habitual sufferers.
Basically, particularly in Britain, it's a hegemonic thing that people who write tend to come from the leisure classes. They can afford the time and the books.
I can't stand still; I find it very difficult to sit around and do nothing. I've got to have projects on the go because the devil makes work for idle hands. I've got to be going forward all the time.
The establishment, the newspapers, they try to create something called Scottish literature, but when people are actually going to write, they are not going to necessarily prescribe to that, they'll write what they feel.
I enjoy the freedom of the blank page.
I feel like I've exhausted guys and male friendships.
It's different in Scotland. People who come to readings are more interested in literature as such, but the readership in general is really quite diverse. It's a cliche, but it's said that people who read my books don't read any other books, and you do get that element.
I didn't have any concept of Trainspotting being published.
It was a selfish act. I did it for myself.
You can't just have stuff that is free and escapist, you have to have stuff that is confrontational as well. You need stuff that is mystical but you need the realism too.
There's all this stuff that is happening in Edinburgh now, it's a sad attempt to create an Edinburgh society, similar to a London society, a highbrow literature celebrity society.
The first of the Trainspotting crew to die.
Out of the five of them like, Begbie, Renton, Spud, Sick Boy and [Margaret] Thatcher. Who'd have thunk she'd have been the first to go? She was the invisible author of the book, really. She created the conditions and the hubris whereby that whole culture flourished.
It's hard to maintain both smack and crack habbits and remember to keep up mobile-phone payments.
When I'm not writing, I read loads of fiction, but I've been writing quite constantly lately so I've been reading a lot of nonfiction - philosophy, religion, science, history, social or cultural studies.
Sometimes there's a snobbery among literary types that these people don't really get it, but in a lot of ways they get it more than the literati. There's a culture in the background that they understand and know. They get that deeper level.
I tend to read more nonfiction, really, because when I'm writing I don't like to read other fiction.
There is a kind of mysticism to writing.
It was around the summer of 1982 when the drug problem really impacted.
It became a lifestyle rather than a recreation. When you start lying and stealing, you cannot con yourself you're in control any more.
Ah wonder if anybody this side of the Atlantic has ever bought a baseball bat with playing baseball in mind.
There's nothing worse than a violent beating from an unremarkable person.
Physical violence with someone is too much like shagging them. Too much id involved.
It's only now that I realize that behaviour always has a context and precedents, it's what you do rather than what you are, although we often never recognise that context or understand what these precedents are.
Bowie's death is a very emotional thing.
My generation of working-class Britain, it feels like we lost our spiritual leader, our guru. I always thought that if I was to be a hundred, somehow Bowie would be a hundred and fifteen. He'd be there to still steer me and guide me.
We made the world uninhabitable for ourselves and it can only be inhabited by robots and androids.
Most people with good jobs, middle-class occupations, what have you, are only one pitfall away from social embarrassment and destitution. It's so precarious. Even salaried people in the West now feel this sense of being trapped, not having the freedom to strike out.
I mean Filth is the best British film since Trainspotting.
It might even be better. I keep watching it back to back with Trainspotting to try and work out which is the best. I can't split them.
It's interesting - you had [George] Osborne crying at [Margaret Tatcher] funeral. She would have been the first person, she would have read these tears as being as fake as the smiles of his predecessors when they knifed her in the back.
Good luck to progressive candidates in U.
S. Senate elections against the usual rich, white, racist, women-hating pricks they run against.
I think there is a natural thing that you feel when you've written something taboo because you just don't want to expose the people you're close to.
The idea is not enough. And the most annoying thing for me as a writer is that people will come up to me and say, 'Hey, I've got a great idea for a book. I'm not a writer, but I've got a great story.'
Are you asking me or telling me?
People love talking about their jobs.
Take them out, buy them lunch or take them for a beer and they'll talk about their job, provided they know that you're going to respect their anonymity.
Holy Joy were a cult '80s band led by the wonderful songwriting genius that is Johny Brown.