Saturday, January 2, 2021

Quote of the Day (James Lee Burke, on Why ‘Vanity in an Artist is Pernicious’)

“William Faulkner, right before his death, said, had I not written the books, another hand would have written them for me. And I think every artist knows that. That’s why vanity in an artist is pernicious and the virtue of humility is not a virtue, it’s a necessity. There is nothing that will kill talent more quickly and with more certainty than pride or self-aggrandizement about one’s gift. This has been my experience. And without exception over the years, as soon as you see an artist, writer, anyone in the arts on television, bragging om his talent, using those horrible words I, me, mine, myself, he’s not at the peak of his career, he’s about ready to go right over the cliff.”—American mystery writer James Lee Burke, quoted in Andrew F. Gulli, “Interview: James Lee Burke,” The Strand Magazine, Issue LXI, 2020

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