“We need systems that are wiser than we are. We need institutions and cultural norms that make us better than we tend to be. It seems to me that the greatest challenge we now face is to build them.”—Sam Harris and other thinkers on the greatest challenges we face as a society. (via explore-blog)
“Motherfuckers will read a book that’s 1/3 elvish, but put two sentences in Spanish and White people think we’re taking over.”—Junot Diaz to the interview question “Do you think using Spanish in your writing alienates some of your readers?” (via lamegrownup)
“For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach.”—J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King (via feellng)
like tbh i feel like my problem with the “dark and gritty!!” trend in modern stories is this
there’s this idea in our culture that cynicism is realistic? that only children believe in happy endings, that people are ultimately selfish and greedy and seeing with clear eyes means seeing the world as an awful place
that idealism is— easy, i guess. butterflies and sunshine and love are easy things to have in your head.
but i’ve known since i was fifteen that idealism— faith in humanity— optimism— is the most difficult thing in the entire world.
i constantly struggle to have faith in humanity, because it’s really, really easy to lose it. it’s easy to look at the news and go “what were you expecting? of course humans behave this way.” it’s easy to see the world and go “ugh, there’s no hope there.” and the years when i believed that were easy. miserable— but easy.
it is hard work to see the good in people. it is hard work to hope. it is hard work to keep faith and love and joy and appreciation for beauty in my daily life.
and when moviemakers and tv producers and writers go “omg!!! all characters are selfish and act poorly and don’t love each other, nothing ever happens that is happy or good, that’s so much more realistic, that’s so much more adult”
“To begin with, you need to write. This seems axiomatic because it is. The only way to amass a pile of words into a book is to shovel some every single day. No days off. You have to form this habit; without it you are screwed. I’m going to assume everyone who keeps reading already has this down. If you don’t — you won’t make it. My best advice on how to form this habit is twofold: Get comfortable staring at a blank screen and not writing. This is a skill. If you can not write and avoid filling that time with distractions, you’ll get to the point where you start writing. Open your manuscript and just be with it.”—
The equal sign (“=”) was invented in 1557 by Welsh mathematician Robert Recorde, who was fed up with writing “is equal to” in his equations. He chose the two lines because “no two things can be more equal”.