Ernest Hemingway Quotes

There is no friend as loyal as a book. Happiness in intelligent people is the rarest thing I know. The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them. There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self. The first draft of anything is shit. There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed. All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence that you know. The world breaks everyone, and afterward, many are strong at the broken places. Always do sober what you said you'd do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut. I love sleep. My life has the tendency to fall apart when I'm awake, you know? I drink to make other people more interesting. The most painful thing is losing yourself in the process of loving someone too much, and forgetting that you are special too. Every day is a new day. It is better to be lucky. But I would rather be exact. Then when luck comes you are ready. When people talk, listen completely. Most people never listen. Never think that war, no matter how necessary, nor how justified, is not a crime. Courage is grace under pressure. Every man's life ends the same way. It is only the details of how he lived and how he died that distinguish one man from another. Forget your personal tragedy. We are all bitched from the start and you especially have to be hurt like hell before you can write seriously. But when you get the damned hurt, use it-don't cheat with it. You are so brave and quiet I forget you are suffering. In order to write about life first you must live it. An intelligent man is sometimes forced to be drunk to spend time with his fools. The hard part about writing a novel is finishing it. They wrote in the old days that it is sweet and fitting to die for one's country. But in modern war, there is nothing sweet nor fitting in your dying. You will die like a dog for no good reason. It's none of their business that you have to learn how to write. Let them think you were born that way. Live the full life of the mind, exhilarated by new ideas, intoxicated by the Romance of the unusual. You know it makes one feel rather good deciding not to be a bitch. If two people love each other there can be no happy end to it. All things truly wicked start from innocence. The first and final thing you have to do in this world is to last it and not be smashed by it. Write hard and clear about what hurts. My aim is to put down on paper what I see and what I feel in the best and simplest way. As a writer, you should not judge, you should understand. Never confuse movement with action. But man is not made for defeat," he said. "A man can be destroyed but not defeated. We are all broken, that’s how the light gets in. The most essential gift for a good writer is a built-in, shockproof, shit detector. There is no rule on how to write. Sometimes it comes easily and perfectly; sometimes it's like drilling rock and then blasting it out with charges. The thing is to become a master and in your old age to acquire the courage to do what children did when they knew nothing. If a writer stops observing he is finished. Experience is communicated by small details intimately observed. A writer should write what he has to say and not speak it. There's nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and open a vein. Today is only one day in all the days that will ever be. But what will happen in all the other days that ever come can depend on what you do today. It's been that way all this year. It's been that way so many times. All of war is that way. We're stronger in the places that we've been broken. No one you love is ever truly lost. I like to listen. I have learned a great deal from listening carefully. Most people never listen. After writing a story I was always empty and both sad and happy, as though I had made love, and I was sure this was a very good story although I would not know truly how good until I read it over the next day.

Ernest Hemingway

1899 - 1961