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Julia Alvarez

  • He was the kind of guy who could kiss you behind your ear and make you feel like you'd just had kinky sex.

  • How we lie to ourselves when we've fallen in love with the wrong man.

  • A novel is not, after all, a historical document, but a way to travel through the human heart.

  • But the sensibility of the writer, whether fiction or poetry, comes from paying attention. I tell my students that writing doesn't begin when you sit down to write. It's a way of being in the world, and the essence of it is paying attention.

    • Julia Alvarez,
    • in Passion and Craft: Conversations With Notable Writers ()
  • Depression is always in the details.

    • Julia Alvarez,
    • "Heartland," The Woman I Kept to Myself ()
  • And every year a day as yet unknown / which I won't be here to enjoy goes by, / which is why now I celebrate each one.

    • Julia Alvarez,
    • "Deathdays," The Woman I Kept to Myself ()
  • ... we learn through what we love to love the world — / which might be all that we are here to do.

    • Julia Alvarez,
    • "Meditation," The Woman I Kept to Myself ()
  • ... we make our art / out of ourselves and what we make makes us.

    • Julia Alvarez,
    • "Tom," The Woman I Kept to Myself ()
  • Unless I write things down I never know / what I think, no less feel, about the world. / ... / In short I don't know I'm alive unless / I'm writing as I'll only be convinced / — when I am scribbled on some stony epitaph — / that I am gone ... and the rest is silence.

    • Julia Alvarez,
    • "Why I Write," The Woman I Kept to Myself ()

Julia Alvarez, U.S. writer, poet

(1950)