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Tobias Wolff QUOTES / QUOTATIONS
A novel invites digression and a little relaxation of the grip because a reader can't endure being held that tightly in hand for so long a time.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
And I think the reason is exactly the reason people don't read poems. Because short stories are very demanding in their way.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
And you can tell the writers who do it - Robert Stone, for example, who with each new novel is doing something new. I appreciate that in other writers.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
Anybody can be very destructive in that position without at all meaning to be, and I know that I have been inadvertently destructive in the past for certain people on certain occasions.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
Because I don't have to be careful of people's feelings when I teach literature, and I do when I'm teaching writing.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
Because the more you write the more you're aware of the weight of your tradition and the difficulties of the form and the more you have already done that you do not want to do again.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
Because we're very nomadic; 80 percent of Americans move at least once every 5 years.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
But a lot of writers - and I'm one of them - do tend to feel dissatisfied. It makes you a little hard to live with, but it's a goad and does keep you alert and restless.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
But as my brother was doing his research for a book about my father, it became his opinion that the most influential anti-semitism my father encountered when he was growing up was from Jews, because his relatives were German Jews, and doctors.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
Everything has to be pulling weight in a short story for it to be really of the first order.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
I believe that the short story is as different a form from the novel as poetry is, and the best stories seem to me to be perhaps closer in spirit to poetry than to novels.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
I have to be honest, of course, but I have to be sure that my honesty comes in a form that is not destructive because it can very easily become so.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
I live with it a long time. It usually takes me a while, two or three weeks, to even figure out what the story is about.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
I love Chekhov. I could go on all day about him.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
I teach one semester a year, and this year I'm just teaching one course during that semester, a writing workshop for older students in their late 20s and early 30s, people in our graduate program who are already working on a manuscript and trying to bring it to completion.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
I try to help people become the best possible editors of their own work, to help them become conscious of the things they do well, of the things they need to look at again, of the wells of material they have not even begun to dip their buckets into.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
I'm very conscious of working from memory but I also know that someone else who was there at the same moment would write something different about it.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
Irish and Jewish seemed a good mix somehow, the way collie and labrador seem a good mix. It had a certain something.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
It's probably why I'm a short story writer. I tend to remember things in the past in narrative form, in story form, and I grew up around people who told stories all the time.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
Like so many writers I started writing stories because I didn't have much time for anything else.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
Memory is funny. Once you hit a vein the problem is not how to remember but how to control the flow.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
Most of us don't live lives that lend themselves to novelistic expression, because our lives are so fragmented.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
Of course it's why you want to become a writer - because you have the liberty to do that, but once you have the liberty you also have the obligation to do it.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
One of the last courses I taught was on the Russian short story, which I love.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
Perhaps that is why the novel flourished in England. You had these communities that would stay put and people would see one another all the time and cause one another to change and have the opportunity to observe the changes over time.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
So you're continually searching for new ways of using the story form to most perfectly contain and express the story you're telling.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
That, for me, is a very important test of a young writer's commitment because most of them are going to have to continue doing that when they've finished the program.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
The reader really has to step up to the plate and read a short story.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
The short story, on the other hand, is the perfect American form.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
There are very few professions in which people just sit down and think hard for five or six hours a day all by themselves.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
There are writers who do start doing the same thing again and again and almost inevitably fall into self-parody.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
There's a joy in writing short stories, a wonderful sense of reward when you pull certain things off.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
They want you to shut the show down the way you do with a novel. And the best short story writers don't work that way.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
When I was about 14 or 15 I decided to become a writer and never for a moment since have I wanted to do anything else.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
Work for most people is really very social, and the actual thinking is often done in community.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
You don't teach information in a writing workshop.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
You have to be kind of clued into them, they are a world of their own, and most people find them disappointing because the best short stories are not constructed like novels.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff
You're setting the bar a little higher each time to keep it interesting for yourself.
Quotation of Tobias Wolff