The most important questions in life can never be answered by anyone except oneself.— John Fowles
The most provocative John Fowles quotes that will transform you to a better person
There comes a time in each life like a point of fulcrum.
At that time you must accept yourself. It is not anymore what you will become. It is what you are and always will be.
The pronoun is one of the most terrifying masks man has invented.
Another reason I think the novel will survive is that the reader has to work in a novel. In a film, you are presented with someone else's imagination exactly bodied out. The marvelous thing about a novel is that every reader will imagine even the very simplest sentence slightly differently.
In some mysterious way woods have never seemed to me to be static things.
In physical terms, I move through them; yet in metaphysical ones, they seem to move through me.
But I think the most harmful change brought about by Victorian science in our attitude to nature lies in the demand that our relation with it must be purposive, industrious, always seeking greater knowledge.
There are many reasons why novelists write, but they all have one thing in common - a need to create an alternative world.
People knew less of each other, perhaps, but they felt more free of each other, and so were more individual. The entire world was not for them only a push or a switch away. Strangers were strange, and sometimes with an exciting, beautiful strangeness. It may be better for humanity that we should communicate more and more.
In essence the Renaissance was simply the green end of one of civilization's hardest winters.
Always we try to put the wild in a cage.
We talked for hours. He talked and I listened. It was like wind and sunlight. It blew all the cobwebs away.
I love making, I love doing. I love being to the full, I love everything which is not sitting and watching and copying and dead at heart.
I hate the uneducated and the ignorant.
I hate the pompous and the phoney. I hate the jealous and the resentful. I hate the crabbed and mean and the petty. I hate all ordinary dull little people who aren't ashamed of being dull and little.
We all write poems; it is simply that poets are the ones who write in words.
Baseball and cricket are beautiful and highly stylized medieval war substitutes, chess made flesh, a mixture of proud chivalry and base-in both senses-greed.
Each age, each guilty age, builds high walls around its Versailles;
and personally I hate those walls most when they are made by literature and art.
Duty largely consists of pretending that the trivial is critical.
I don't think the English like me. I sold a colossal best seller in America, and they never really forgave me.
That is the great distinction between the sexes.
Men see objects, women seetherelationship between objects? It is an extra dimension of feeling which we men are without and one that makes war abhorrent to all real women?and absurd.
...all cynicism masks a failure to cope.
I was too green to know that all cynicism masks a failure to cope - an impotence, in short; and that to despise all effort is the greatest effort of all.
Whole sight; or all the rest is desolation.
That is the great distinction between the sexes.
Men see objects, women see the relationships between objects.
The supposed great misery of our century is the lack of time.
He was one of the most supremely stupid men I have ever met. He taught me a great deal.
I am talking about the general psychological health of the species, man.
He needs the existence of mysteries. Not their solution.
Do you know that every great thing in the history of art and every beautiful thing in life is actually what you call nasty or has been caused by feelings that you would call nasty? By passion, by love, by hatred, by truth. Do you know that?
All novelists should live in two different worlds: a real one and an unreal one.
The more abhorrent a news item the more comforting it was to be the recipient, since the fact that it had happened elsewhere proved that it had not happened here, was not happening here, and would therefore never happen here.
I read and I read; and I was like a medieval king, I had fallen in love with the picture long before I saw the reality.
The power of women! I've never felt so full of mysterious power.
Men are a joke. We're so weak physically, so helpless with things. Still, even today. But we're stronger than they are. We can stand their cruelty. They can't stand ours.
The bowed head, the buried face. She is silent, she will never speak, never forgive, never reach a hand, never leave this frozen present tense. All waits, suspended. Suspended the autumn trees, the autumn sky, anonymous people. A blackbird, poor fool, sings out of season from the willows by the lake. A flight of pigeons over the houses; fragments of freedom, hazard, an anagram made flesh. And somewhere the stinging smell of burning leaves.
Science disembodies; art embodies.
Adulthood is not an age, but a stage of knowledge of self.
Content is a word unknown to life; it is also a word unknown to man.
And I just can't live in this present. I would go mad if I did.
The profoundest distances are never geographical.
Forgetting’s not something you do, it happens to you. Only it didn’t happen to me.
Edith Sitwell's interest in art was largely confined to portraits of herself.
I was born in 1927, the only child of middle-class parents, both English, and themselves born in the grotesquely elongated shadow, which they never rose sufficiently above history to leave, of that monstrous dwarf Queen Victoria.
The supposed great misery of our century is the lack of time;
our sense of that, not a disinterested love of science, and certainly not wisdom, is why we devote such a huge proportion of the ingenuity and income of our societies to finding faster ways of doing things - as if the final aim of mankind was to grow closer not to a perfect humanity, but to a perfect lightning-flash.
I think we are just insects, we live a bit and then die and that’s the lot.
There’s no mercy in things. There’s not even a Great Beyond. There’s nothing.
You put up with your voice and speak with it because you haven't any choice.
But it's what you say that counts.
The world began in hazard and will end in it.
There are two kinds of hangover: in one you feel ill and incapable, in the other you feel ill and lucid.
The battle was over. Our casualties were some thirteen thousand killed--thirteen thousand minds, memories, loves, sensations, worlds, universes--because the human mind is more a universe than the universe itself--and all for a few hundred yards of useless mud.
It is only when our characters and events begin to disobey us that they begin to live.
Think. In a minute from now you could be saying, I risked death. I threw for life, and I won life. It is a very wonderful feeling. To have survived.
I do not plan my fiction any more than I normally plan woodland walks;
I follow the path that seems most promising at any given point, not some itinerary decided before entry.