I’m selfish, impatient and a little insecure. I make mistakes, I am out of control and at times hard to handle. But if you can’t handle me at my worst, then you sure as hell don’t deserve me at my best.
I try to go there in my writing. I make myself uncomfortable. When I feel nauseous, or disgusted with myself I think, “Now I am getting somewhere.” Life is pretty cruel so I like writing about both the petty and more significant cruelties we have to face. Is it uncomfortable? Yes. But so is life. It is important for writing to take chances and push boundaries, not all the time, but when it serves the story best. That’s all I am ever trying to do.
A writer should concern himself with whatever absorbs his fancy, stirs his heart, and unlimbers his typewriter. I feel no obligation to deal with politics. I do feel a responsibility to society because of going into print: a writer has the duty to be good, not lousy; true, not false; lively, not dull; accurate, not full of error. He should tend to lift people up, not lower them down. Writers do not merely reflect and interpret life, they inform and shape life.
Give a man a fire and he’s warm for a day, but set fire to him and he’s warm for the rest of his life.