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Nicholson Baker quotes

I was very shy and somewhat awkward. I studied too hard. And to have this exciting dorm life was a whole new thing.

One's head is finite. You pour more and more things into it - surnames, chronologies, affiliations - and it packs them away in its tunnels, and eventually you find that you have a book about something that you publish.

Wikipedia is just an incredible thing. It is fact-encirclingly huge, and it is idiosyncratic, careful, messy, funny, shocking and full of simmering controversies - and it is free, and it is fast.

For me, as a beginning novelist, all other living writers form a control group for whom the world is a placebo.

I'm often called obsessive, but I don't think I am any more than anyone else.

I've always thought of myself as shy.

From my music training, I knew that, some Spanish rhythms apart, 5/4 is a time signature used only in the modern era. Holst's Mars from the Planets is 5/4. But if you speak lines of poetry in that pattern you just end up hitting the off-beats. It's only when you add a rest - a sixth beat - that it sounds as it surely should sound.

I hadn't played any music since freshman year of college, more than thirty years ago, so I had to relearn everything. I started writing songs. Some were dance and trance songs (I listen to them a lot while I'm writing), and some were love songs, because that after all is what music is about - dancing and trancing and love and love's setbacks.

I think I am done with Wikipedia for the time being. But I have a secret hope. Someone recently proposed a Wikimorgue - a bin of broken dreams where all rejects could still be read, as long as they weren't libelous or otherwise illegal.

The great thing about novels is that you can be as unshy as you want to be. I'm very polite in person. I don't want to talk about startling or upsetting things with people.

The nice thing about a protest song is that it takes the complaint, the fussing, the finger-pointing, and gives it an added component of sociable harmony.

Haven't you felt a peculiar sort of worry about the chair in your living room that no one sits in?

Until a friend or relative has applied a particular proverb to your own life, or until you've watched him apply the proverb to his own life, it has no power to sway you.

First, if you love the Kindle and it works for you, it isn't problematic, and you should ignore all my criticisms and read the way you want to read.

I no longer want to live in an apartment furnished with forklifts and backhoes.

I've never been a fast reader. I'm fickle; I don't finish books I start; I put a book aside for five, ten years and then take it up again.

Rarely do pens go dry in restaurants.

Shoes are the first adult machines we are given to master.

So I really began as a failed poet - although when I first wanted to be a writer, I learned to write prose by reading poetry.

That was the problem with reading: you always had to pick up again at the very thing that had made you stop reading the day before.