29 Total Quotes

James Ellroy Quotes

The 1950s to me is darkness, hidden history, perversion behind most doors waiting to creep out. The 1950s to most people is kitsch and Mickey Mouse watches and all this intolerable stuff...
James Ellroy
#Twentieth Century

Anybody who doesn't know that politics is crime has got a few screws loose.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

As a kid, I sensed history going on all around me, but the basic thrust of it didn't move me.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

As critical acclaim and response has built up, every interview I give is a chance to puncture the myth I've created about my work and refine it.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

As much as I transferred my mother to Elizabeth Shore of The Black Dahlia, as much as her dad mutated into an obsession with crime in general, well, I have thought about other things throughout the years.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

Every one of my books is written from the viewpoint of cops, with the exception of my book Killer on the Road, which is written from the viewpoint of a serial killer.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

I am a writer. I could not afford to take 15 months off from my writing career to play detective.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

I am conservative by temperament. I disapprove of criminal activity. I am very solidly and markedly on the side of authority. The truth is I would rather err on the side of too much authority than too little.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

I am the most well-adjusted human being I know. I started out this investigation as a very happy man with a great career. I've got the life people dream about: I am rich, I am famous, I've got a fabulous marriage to an absolutely, spell-bindingly brilliant woman.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

I don't know anybody in the underworld. I make this stuff up. I don't know any criminals.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

I feel very calm and poised underneath it all, but no less passionate or committed to the work. I won't go soft on you, but I feel calm inside.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

I have a very intense marriage.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

I haven't been to a movie in a year and a half.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

I like to be alone so I can write. But focus can hurt you. I don't want to be some stress casualty in early middle age.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

I love thinking about American history, thinking about LA history. I love brooding on crime.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

I put on such a good show, the story is outrageous, and people don't want to hear that I'm basically a reasonable human being. As long as it continues to get me print, I'll continue to perform in an exuberant manner.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

I want to see these bad, bad, bad, bad men come to grips with their humanity.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

I was a WASP kid going to a high school that was 99 percent Jewish and I wanted attention and I wanted to make a spectacle of myself because I couldn't stand to be ignored.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

I would like to provoke ambiguous responses in my readers.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

I'm clenched down, I'm locked in on it, which is my general approach to life.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

I'm getting a wider circle of fans now. More women, more middle class people.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

I've been tremendously moved by a bunch of odd books. Ross McDonald is very important to me. I love the Lew Archer books.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

It was interesting to write directly about what things meant to me. A lot of the art of writing novels is in telling things by implication.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

My mother and I will continue on some level that I haven't determined yet. I think my mother's a great character, and I have to say that giving my mother to the world has to be the biggest thrill of my writing career.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

Noir is dead for me because historically, I think it's a simple view. I've taken it as far as it can go. I think I've expanded on it a great deal, taken it further than any other American novelist.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

Raymond Chandler once wrote that Dashiell Hammett gave murder back to the people who really committed it.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

Rock and rollers can get you the youth buzz, and younger people are fanatical readers.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

The truth of the matter is, you lose a parent to murder when you're 10 years old, and in fact at the time of the murder you hate your lost parent, my mother in my case.
James Ellroy
#American Writer

When I was a kid, Eisenhower had been President forever, and all of a sudden, everything in the world was all about Jack Kennedy. I was 12, interested in politics; my father was from Massachusetts, had an accent like Kennedy.
James Ellroy
#American Writer