100 Total Quotes

John Updike Quotes

John Updike
Religion enables us to ignore nothingness and get on with the jobs of life.
John Updike
#American Novelist #Jobs

John Updike
If men do not keep on speaking terms with children, they cease to be men, and become merely machines for eating and for earning money.
John Updike
#American Novelist #Children

John Updike
Our brains are no longer conditioned for reverence and awe. We cannot imagine a Second Coming that would not be cut down to size by the televised evening news, or a Last Judgment not subject to pages of holier-than-thou second-guessing in The New York Review of Books.
John Updike
#Christianity

John Updike
A narrative is like a room on whose walls a number of false doors have been painted; while within the narrative, we have many apparent choices of exit, but when the author leads us to one particular door, we know it is the right one because it opens.
John Updike
#American Novelist #Doors

John Updike
Bankruptcy is a sacred state, a condition beyond conditions, as theologians might say, and attempts to investigate it are necessarily obscene, like spiritualism. One knows only that he has passed into it and lives beyond us, in a condition not ours.
John Updike
#Debt

John Updike
Golf appeals to the idiot in us and the child. Just how childlike golf players become is proven by their frequent inability to count past five.
John Updike
#American Novelist #Golf

John Updike
Writing criticism is to writing fiction and poetry as hugging the shore is to sailing in the open sea.
John Updike
#American Novelist #Criticism

John Updike
The refusal to rest content, the willingness to risk excess on behalf of one's obsessions, is what distinguishes artists from entertainers, and what makes some artists adventurers on behalf of us all.
John Updike
#American Novelist

John Updike
A leader is one who, out of madness or goodness, volunteers to take upon himself the woe of the people. There are few men so foolish, hence the erratic quality of leadership in the world.
John Updike
#American Novelist #Goodness

John Updike
When I write, I aim in my mind not toward New York but toward a vague spot a little to the east of Kansas.
John Updike
#American Novelist #Mind

John Updike
Most of American life consists of driving somewhere and then returning home, wondering why the hell you went.
John Updike
#American Novelist

John Updike
Four years was enough of Harvard. I still had a lot to learn, but had been given the liberating notion that now I could teach myself.
John Updike
#American Novelist

John Updike
From infancy on, we are all spies; the shame is not this but that the secrets to be discovered are so paltry and few.
John Updike
#American Novelist #Secrets

John Updike
I would rather have as my patron a host of anonymous citizens digging into their own pockets for the price of a book or a magazine than a small body of enlightened and responsible men administering public funds. I would rather chance my personal vision of truth striking home here and there in the chaos of publication that exists than attempt to filter it through a few sets of official, honorably public-spirited scruples.
John Updike
#Patronage #Anonymous

John Updike
You cannot help but learn more as you take the world into your hands. Take it up reverently, for it is an old piece of clay, with millions of thumbprints on it.
John Updike
#Graduation

John Updike
By the time a partnership dissolves, it has dissolved.
John Updike
#American Novelist #Partnership

John Updike
Each morning my characters greet me with misty faces willing, though chilled, to muster for another day's progress through the dazzling quicksand the marsh of blank paper.
John Updike
#American Novelist

John Updike
It is not difficult to deceive the first time, for the deceived possesses no antibodies; unvaccinated by suspicion, she overlooks lateness, accepts absurd excuses, permits the flimsiest patching to repair great rents in the quotidian.
John Updike
#Adultery #Suspicion

John Updike
A healthy male adult bore consumes each year one and a half times his own weight in other people's patience.
John Updike
#American Novelist