Happy Birthday, Lev Grossman, born 26 June 1969
10 Lev Grossman Quotes
- A novel with a bad middle is a bad book. A bad ending is something I’ve just gotten in the habit of forgiving.
- Being a writer can be isolating. It’s good to be among readers and booksellers.
- How often have I met and disliked writers whose books I love; and conversely, hated the books and then wound up liking the writer? Too often.
- I think every fantasy reader secretly believes they know how magic works.
- I used to write in a local coffee shop, but there was another guy, another writer, who kept sitting in my favourite seat. I would show up, and he would be there, and I would get exiled to a couch or something, and it would throw me off my game. Then I figured out he was Jonathan Safran Foer. True Story.
- My book group has one rule: no books for adults. We read young adult fiction only.
- Fanfiction is what literature might look like if it were reinvented from scratch after a nuclear apocalypse by a band of brilliant pop-culture junkies trapped in a sealed bunker. They don’t do it for money. That’s not what it’s about. The writers write it and put it up online just for the satisfaction. They’re fans, but they’re not silent, couch-bound consumers of media. The culture talks to them, and they talk back to the culture in its own language.
- I read a lot of literary theory when I was in graduate school, especially about novels, and the best book I ever read about endings was Peter Brooks’sReading for the Plot.
- As far as I can tell there are two kinds of fiction writers: those who read no fiction while they write, and those who constantly read fiction while they write. Let’s have cute names for them. We’ll call them Soloists and Thieves. I’m the second kind. I can’t function as a writer unless I’m reading somebody else — somebody better than me — and stripping off parts and reverse-engineering special effects and so on as I go.
- The novel won’t stay the same: it has always been exquisitely sensitive to newness, hence the name. It’s about to renew itself again, into something cheaper, wilder, trashier, more democratic and more deliriously fertile than ever.
Grossman is an American novelist and journalist. He is the author of the novelsWarp, Codex, The Magicians and The Magician King. He is a senior writer and book critic for Time.
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