By concentrating on what is good in people, by appealing to their idealism and their sense of justice, and by asking them to put their faith in the future, socialists put themselves at a severe disadvantage.
It's good to get your hands dirty a bit and to test how you see things at a given point. And it's very pleasing after writing something like 'Atonement' or 'On Chesil Beach,' which are historical, to get involved in some plausible re-enactment of the here and now.
I think of novels in architectural terms. You have to enter at the gate, and this gate must be constructed in such a way that the reader has immediate confidence in the strength of the building.
Perhaps the greatest reading pleasure has an element of self-annihilation. To be so engrossed that you barely know you exist.
What is it precisely, that feeling of 'returning' from a poem? Something is lighter, softer, larger - then it fades, but never completely.
I was an intimate sort of child who never spoke up in groups. I preferred close friends.
I wouldn't mind being the lead guitarist in an incredibly successful rock band. However, I don't play the guitar.
Now, I'm an atheist. I really don't believe for a moment that our moral sense comes from a god.
One has to have the courage of one's pessimism.
You enter a state of controlled passivity, you relax your grip and accept that even if your declared intention is to justify the ways of God to man, you might end up interesting your readers rather more in Satan.
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