It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends.
It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all, in which case you have failed by default.
The moment you are old enough to take the wheel, responsibility lies with you.
You sort of start thinking anything’s possible if you’ve got enough nerve.
If you want to see the true measure of a man, watch how he treats his inferiors, not his equals.
I was set free because my greatest fear had been realized, and I still had a daughter who I adored, and I had an old typewriter and a big idea. And so rock bottom became a solid foundation on which I rebuilt my life.
Poverty entails fear and stress and sometimes depression. It meets a thousand petty humiliations and hardships. Climbing out of poverty by your own efforts that is something on which to pride yourself but poverty itself is romanticized by fools.
Why do I talk about the benefits of failure? Simply because failure meant a stripping away of the inessential. I stopped pretending to myself that I was anything other than what I was, and began to direct all my energy into finishing the only work that mattered to me.
When people are very damaged, they can often meet the world with a kind of defiance.
I really don’t believe in magic.
If you’re holding out for universal popularity, I’m afraid you will be in this cabin for a very long time.
Talent and intelligence never yet inoculated anyone against the caprice of the fates.
We’re a phenomenally snobby society, and it’s such a rich seam. The middle class is so funny: it’s the class I know best, and it’s the class where you find the most pretension, so that’s what makes the middle classes so funny.
What is needed, rather than running away or controlling or suppressing or any other resistance, is understanding fear that means, watch it, learn about it, come directly into contact with it. We are to learn about fear, not how to escape from it. ~J. K. Rowling on Jiddu Krishnamurti
I’m not anti-middle-class in the slightest. Look at me! I am very pro people putting time and money and effort into trying to improve the world.
I always felt an outsider.
The poor are discussed as this homogeneous mash, like porridge. The idea that they might be individuals, and be where they are for very different, diverse reasons, again seems to escape some people.
Indifference and neglect often do much more damage than outright dislike.
I think you have a moral responsibility when you’ve been given far more than you need, to do wise things with it and give intelligently.
I love the man that can smile in trouble, that can gather strength from distress, and grow brave by reflection. ‘Tis the business of little minds to shrink, but he whose heart is firm, and whose conscience approves his conduct, will pursue his principles unto death. ~J. K. Rowling on Thomas Paine
Humans have a knack for choosing precisely the things that are worst for them.
It is perfectly possible to live a very moral life without a belief in God, and I think it’s perfectly possible to live a life peppered with ill-doing and believe in God.
I’ve never managed to keep a journal longer than two weeks.
The best of us must sometimes eat our words.