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Patricia Highsmith

  • Like an enormous walnut in feeble, jittery squirrel hands, an idea, bigger and closer than any idea he had ever known, had been revolving in his mind for several days.

  • The conversation seemed just as boring and forgettable as details of American history around 1805, for example.

  • And no book, and possibly no painting, when it is finished, is ever exactly like the first dream of it.

  • I find the public passion for justice quite boring and artificial, for neither life nor nature cares if justice is ever done or not.

  • The first person you should think of pleasing, in writing a book, is yourself. If you can amuse yourself for the length of time it takes to write a book, the publisher and the readers can and will come later.

  • When I am thickening my plots, I like to think 'What if ... What if ... ' Thus my imagination can move from the likely, which everyone can think of, to the unlikely-but-possible, my preferred plot.

    • Patricia Highsmith,
    • in Clare Boylan, ed., The Agony and the Ego ()
  • The kiss became the narrowed center of the still point of the turning world, so that even the park was turning in comparison to the still peace at their lips.

    • Patricia Highsmith,
    • "The Still Point of the Turning World," Nothing That Meets the Eye: The Uncollected Stories of Patricia Highsmith ()
  • Life is a long failure of understanding ... a long, mistaken shutting of the heart.

    • Patricia Highsmith,
    • "The Trouble With Mrs. Blynn," Nothing That Meets the Eye: The Uncollected Stories of Patricia Highsmith ()
  • Each book is, in a sense, an argument with myself, and I would write it, whether it is ever published or not.

    • Patricia Highsmith

Patricia Highsmith, U.S. writer

(1921 - 1995)

Full name: Mary Patricia Plangman Highsmith. Sometimes wrote as Claire Morgan.