Thursday, April 12, 2007

Kurt Vonnegut died

He influenced so many writers. I love these Vonnegut quotes:

"Be careful what you pretend to be because you are what you pretend to be."

"Here we are, trapped in the amber of the moment. There is no why."

"Any reviewer who expresses rage and loathing for a novel is preposterous. He or she is like a person who has put on full armor and attacked a hot fudge sundae."

"Like so many Americans, she was trying to construct a life that made sense from things she found in gift shops."

"Human beings will be happier - not when they cure cancer or get to Mars or eliminate racial prejudice or flush Lake Erie but when they find ways to inhabit primitive communities again. That's my utopia."

"I tell you, we are here on Earth to fart around, and don't let anybody tell you different."

"I want to stand as close to the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you see all the kinds of things you can't see from the center."

"People don't come to church for preachments, of course, but to daydream about God."

His books--Slaughterhouse-Five, Sirens of Titan, Player Piano and God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater--affected me. I was in college, becoming a writer.

We should have memorial services for Vonnegut all over. Read his work aloud. Remember.

3 comments:

Potato Print said...

Hi Barbara,

I'm not sure how I slipped and slid in the blogosphere to land here, but here I am. You have a lovely blog. There are few things that I appreciate more than succinct and evocative writing. Bravo.

Thank you for this tribute to a writer whom I admire very much. I, too, was greatly moved by his writing while I was in high school and university. Recently I found an old journal (1972) into which I had copied four pages of "Slaughterhouse Five."

Those quotes made me beam.

Nienke said...

Vonnegut had a great impact on me too. He was the first author that I liked enough to buy his backlist.
This weekend another great writer - Canadian June Callwood died. She was an incredible woman and will be sorely missed not only for her writing, but for her activism.

Deborah said...

There was this exchange I read some place, that I remember, and can't seem to forget:

If you could write an epitaph for the 20th century, what would it be?

"I have written it. The good Earth -- we could have saved it, but we were too damn cheap and lazy."