Best 246 of Martin Amis quotes - MyQuotes

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Martin Amis
By Anonym 13 Sep

Martin Amis

Envy never comes to the ball dressed as envy; it comes dressed as high moral standards or distaste for materialism.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Martin Amis

What is the only provocation that could bring about the use of nuclear weapons? Nuclear weapons. What is the priority target for nuclear weapons? Nuclear weapons. What is the only established defense against nuclear weapons? Nuclear weapons. How do we prevent the use of nuclear weapons? By threatening to use nuclear weapons. And we can't get rid of nuclear weapons, because of nuclear weapons. The intransigence, it seems, is a function of the weapons themselves.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Martin Amis

Tremendous interest in the superficial is very characteristic of cultures in decline.

By Anonym 16 Sep

Martin Amis

It is straightforward—and never mind, for now, about plagues and famines: if God existed, and if he cared for humankind, he would never have given us religion.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Martin Amis

Des heard the dogs. They weren't barking, he realized, not exactly. They were swearing. And the rooftop rottweilers, faintly and almost plaintively, at this distance, were swearing back: 'FUCKOFF!' yelled Joe, or Jeff. It was almost a monosyllable. 'FUCKOFF!' 'FUCK! FUCK!' 'FUCKOFF!' 'FUCKOFF!' yelled Jeff, or Joe. 'FUCKOFF!' 'FUCK! FUCK!' 'FUCKOFF!

By Anonym 14 Sep

Martin Amis

Sex was like Disneyland to her: an allotment of organized wonders and legal mischief.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Martin Amis

Writers spend too much time among dead things. I thought that was profound and actually true, that you're trying to pump life into something that is inanimate. You see what a sort of audacious thing it is to move these sort of imaginary people around in a very stylized and patterned world.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Martin Amis

To idealize: all writing is a campaign against cliché. Not just clichés of the pen but clichés of the mind and clichés of the heart.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Martin Amis

It seems to me that you need a lot of courage, or a lot of something, to enter into others, into other people. We all think that everyone else lives in fortresses, in fastnesses: behind moats, behind sheer walls studded with spikes and broken glass. But in fact we inhabit much punier structures. We are, as it turns out, all jerry-built. Or not even. You can just stick your head under the flap of the tent and crawl right in. If you get the okay.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Martin Amis

If you want to know the real meaning of pornography, it is the utter dissociation of love and sex, the banishment of love from the sexual arena.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Martin Amis

The children of the nuclear age, I think, were weakened in their capacity to love. Hard to love, when you're bracing yourself for impact. Hard to love, when the loved one, and the lover, might at any instant become blood and flames, along with everybody else.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Martin Amis

Gluttony and sloth, as worldly goals, were quietly usurped by avarice and lust, which, together with poetry (yes, poetry), consumed all my free time.

By Anonym 19 Sep

Martin Amis

These little hurts were like little pets or potted plants you were abruptly given the care of, needing to be fed or walked or watered. As you pass the half-century, the flesh, the coating on the person, begins to attenuate. And the world is full of blades and spikes. For a year or two your hands are nicked and scraped as a schoolboy's knee. Then you learn to protect yourself. This is what you'll go on doing until, near the end, you are doing nothing else--just protecting yourself. And while you are learning how to do that, a doorkey is a doornail, and the flap of the letterbox is a meat-slicer, and the very air is full of spikes and blades.

By Anonym 17 Sep

Martin Amis

Making lots of money--it's not that hard, you know. It's overestimated. Making lots of money is a breeze. You watch. ch. 1, p. 23 in Penguin paperback

By Anonym 14 Sep

Martin Amis

The argument, now, is about whether Bolshevik Russia was 'better' than Nazi Germany. In the days when the New Left dawned, the argument was about whether Bolshevik Russia was better than America.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Martin Amis

The process of writing a novel begins with a pang, a moment of recognition, and a situation, a character, or something you read in a paper, that seems to go off, like a solar flare inside your head.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Martin Amis

Never content just to be, America is also obliged to mean; America signifies, hence its constant and riveting vulnerability to illusion.

By Anonym 16 Sep

Martin Amis

It used to be said, not so long ago, that every suicide gave Satan special pleasure. I don't think that's true—unless it isn't true either that the Devil is a gentleman. If the Devil has no class at all, then okay, I agree: He gets a bang out of suicide. Because suicide is a mess. As a subject for study, suicide is perhaps uniquely incoherent. And the act itself is without shape and without form. The human project implodes, contorts inward—shameful, infantile, writhing, gesturing. It's a mess in there.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Martin Amis

So if you ever felt something behind you, when you weren't even one, like welcome heat, like a bulb, like a sun, trying to shine right across the universe - it was me. Always me. It was me. It was me.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Martin Amis

You never can tell, though, with suicide notes, can you? In the planetary aggregate of all life, there are many more suicide notes than there are suicides. They're like poems in that respect, suicide notes: nearly everyone tries their hand at them some time, with or without the talent. We all write them in our heads. Usually the note is the thing. You complete it, and then resume your time travel. It is the note and not the life that is cancelled out. Or the other way round. Or death. You never can tell, though, can you, with suicide notes.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Martin Amis

I think writers are excited by stupidity and bad behavior, generally.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Martin Amis

Who's straight? I'm not. I am bent gouged pinched and tugged at, and squeezed into this funny shape. Each life is a game of chess that went to hell on the seventh move, and now the flukey play is cramped and slow, a dream of constraint and cross-purpose, with each move forced, all pieces pinned and skewered and zugzwanged... But here and there we see these figures who appear to run on the true lines, and they are terrible examples. They're rich, usually.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Martin Amis

Your heart becomes gangrenous in your body when you go against your talent.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Martin Amis

All writers of fiction will at some point find themselves abandoning a piece of work - or find themselves putting it aside, as we gently say.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Martin Amis

I would say I'm an ironist not a satirist. All you do is you take existing tendencies and crank them up, just turn up the volume dial. Which is a technique of science fiction, apart from anything else.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Martin Amis

As someone once said, covers to a novel are like bars to a cage. You can watch the tiger, the Komodo dragon, and admire it - its heart, its severity. Even when they carry out an ugly act, it's still fascinating.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Martin Amis

September 11 was a day of de-Enlightenment. Politics stood revealed as a veritable Walpurgis Night of the irrational. And such old, old stuff. The conflicts we now face or fear involve opposed geographical arenas, but also opposed centuries or even millennia. It is a landscape of ferocious anachronisms: nuclear jihad in the Indian subcontinent; the medieval agonism of Islam; the Bronze Age blunderings of the Middle East.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Martin Amis

You know, I wouldn’t have done this a month ago. I wouldn’t have done it then. Then I was avoiding. Now I’m just waiting. Things happen to me. They do. They have to go ahead and happen. You watch – you wait… Things still happen here and something is waiting to happen to me. I can tell. Recently my life feels like a bloodcurdling joke. Recently my life has taken on *form* Something is waiting. I am waiting. Soon, it will stop waiting – any day now. Awful things can happen any time. This is the awful thing.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Martin Amis

America is a younger country than England, obviously, and as self-awareness is forming in America - are we a collection of immigrants, are we a load of Italians and Germans and Jews and Brits and Irish, or are we a country with a soul and an identity? - there was a subliminal sense, they knew that the writers would be the ones who would answer those questions.

By Anonym 16 Sep

Martin Amis

It takes three or four years before the present day sinks in to you as a novelist. It has not just to be accepted in the mind but travel down your spine and fill your body and you can’t respond immediately to immediate events, there is this incubation period. Source: http://www.euronews.com/2013/06/25/ma...

By Anonym 20 Sep

Martin Amis

Whereas I would argue that style is morality: morality detailed, configured, intensified. It’s not in the mere narrative arrangement of good and bad that morality makes itself felt. It can be there in every sentence

By Anonym 15 Sep

Martin Amis

We live in the age of mass loquacity.We are all writing it or at any rate talking it: the memoir, the apologia, the c.v., the cri de coeur.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Martin Amis

But before we face experience, that miserable enemy, let us have some more innocence, just for a while.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Martin Amis

America still is the center of the world, and what happens in the American economy matters everywhere.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Martin Amis

when the sky is as grey as this - impeccably grey, a denial, really of the very concept of colour - and the stooped millions lift their heads, it's hard to tell the air from the impurities in our human eyes, as if the sinking climbing paisley curlicues of grit were part of the element itself, rain, spores, tears, film, dirt. Perhaps, at such moments, the sky is no more then the sum of the dirt that lives in our human eyes.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Martin Amis

Let me assure you that the humourless as a bunch don't just not know what's funny, they don't know what's serious. They have no common sense, either, and shouldn't be trusted with anything.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Martin Amis

I would say that the writers I like and trust have at the base of their prose something called the English sentence. An awful lot of modern writing seems to me to be a depressed use of language. Once, I called it "vow-of-poverty prose." No, give me the king in his countinghouse. Give me Updike.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Martin Amis

Every writer hopes or boldly assumes that his life is in some sense exemplary, that the particular will turn out to be universal.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Martin Amis

I think novelists are in the education business, really, but they're not teaching you times tables, they are teaching you responsiveness and morality and to make nuanced judgments. And really to just make the planet look a bit richer when you go out into the street.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Martin Amis

Unless I specifically inform you otherwise, I'm always smoking another cigarette.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Martin Amis

You know how it is when two souls meet in a burst of ecstatic volubility, with hearts tickling to hear and to tell, to know everything, to reveal everything, the shared reverence for the other's otherness, a feeling of solitude radiantly snapped by full *contact* - all that?

By Anonym 13 Sep

Martin Amis

He was an artist when he saw society: it never crossed his mind that society had to be like this; had any right, had any business being like this. A car in the street. Why? Why cars? This is what an artist has to be: harassed to the point of insanity or stupefaction by first principles.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Martin Amis

All that rejection from Republicans has a bit of a racist element. It was very necessary to have a black president, and it's been a great thing. It will help, in the end, to ease the trauma of slavery and civil war. The war against slavery cost almost 800,000 American lives - that's how strongly they felt about it. And it's not going to go away in a century.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Martin Amis

Insects are what neurosis would sound like, if neurosis could make a noise with its nose.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Martin Amis

It's not that you get a cliché and then wiggle it about or use synonyms. You don't take an ordinary decorative paragraph and give it style. What you're trying to do is be faithful to your perceptions and transmit them as faithfully as you can. I say these sentences until they sound right. There's no objective reason why they're right. They just sound right to me.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Martin Amis

Standing in the nordic nook of the kitchen, I can gaze down at the flimsy-limbed joggers heading south towards the Park. It's nearly as bad as New York. Some of these gasping fatsos, these too-little-too-late artists, they look as though they're running up rising ground, climbing ground. My generation, we started all this. Before, everyone was presumably content to feel like death the whole time. Now they want to feel terrific for ever.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Martin Amis

For both of us, I think, it had to do with our weakened power to love. It is strange that enslavement should have that effect – not just the fantastic degradation, not just the fear and the boredom and all the rest, but also the layered injustice, the silent injustice. So all right. We’re back where we started. To you, nothing – from you, everything. They took it from me, it seems, for no reason, other than that I value it so much.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Martin Amis

It sounds schmaltzy to say, but fiction is much more to do with love than people admit or acknowledge. The novelist has to not only love his characters - which you do, without even thinking about it, just as you love your children. But also to love the reader, and that's what I mean by the pleasure principle.

By Anonym 20 Sep

Martin Amis

Why couldn't Rachel be a little more specific about the type of person she was? Goodness knew; if she were a hippie I'd talk to her about her drug experiences, the zodiac, tarot cards. If she were left-wing I'd look miserable, hate Greece, and eat baked beans straight from the tin. If she were the sporty type I'd play her at... chess and backgammon and things.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Martin Amis

Seeing the world anew, as if it were new, is as old as writing. It's what all painters are trying to do, to see what's there, to see it in a way that renews it. It becomes more and more urgent as the planet gets worn flat and forest after forest is slain to print the paper for people's impressions to be scrawled down on. It becomes harder and harder to be original, to see things with an innocent eye. Innocence is much tied up with it. As the planet gets progressively less innocent, you need a more innocent eye to see it.