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Harry Mathews Quotes

After the navy, I transferred to Harvard and finished there. I was there the spring term of 1951 and I stayed through the summer term and a whole other year, so I was able to do two years in a little less than a year and a half.

And I finished college because I thought how much it would upset my parents if I didn't.

And then, when I left Princeton in the middle of my sophomore year, I went into the navy.

I also had this mistaken dream, fantasy really - perhaps because I'm good at languages - of being able in both Italy and France to become someone else through my fluency in the language.

I graduated in 1952 and went to Europe, with Niki and our first child Laura, who was then a year old.

I left Princeton, but I graduated Harvard, in 1952.

I love teaching.

I think situations are more important than plot and character.

I thought Cheever was magnificent and that if I could write like him that would be the best I could do. And then I realized that what I really wanted to write had nothing to do with what he was doing.

I was immediately smitten with an attraction to this culture, not in the sense of high culture but of the basic way people behaved towards one another.

I was stationed in Norfolk, Virginia, for a while, about which the less said the better, and then I was in the Mediterranean, about which the more said the better.

I'd been brought up on the Upper East Side in a WASP society, which was death on crutches.

It has always been something I could do, and it may seem odd that in my case I seem to create an interesting narrative and frustrate the reader's opportunities to follow it at every step.

It's true, I had an extremely delicious life, but that was my life at home, and perhaps because I was only a child, or for whatever reasons, I found the company of others, especially other boys, quite terrifying and upsetting.

Music had been my first love among the arts, and I was fascinated by it, as I still am.

My dream, I remember, when I went to boarding school, was to have a study all my own, a little nook someplace where nobody could get at me - nobody, like the football coach.

My idea was to go to Vienna to study conducting and perhaps play in an orchestra first, so I thought before I got to Vienna I could do with a little training in Paris.

My Life in CIA is the first time that I've ever written a story in my own name.

My mother could never understand why I didn't write a thriller, which I've finally done.

My next project is to get back to that. Actually, to learn how to write poetry. I'm not kidding.