Thursday, July 19, 2012

So Long and Thanks: a Tribute to Ray Bradbury


Picture from:  http://screenrant.com/ray-bradbury-obituary-sandy-177336/ 

Everyone must leave something behind when he dies, my grandfather said. A child or a book or a painting or a house or a wall built or a pair of shoes made. Or a garden planted. Something your hand touched some way so your soul has somewhere to go when you die, and when people look at that tree or that flower you planted, you’re there.”
Ray Bradbury



Today's Topic is the great Ray Bradbury.
On June 5, 2012, Ray Bradbury, a poet, novelist, short story writer, playwright, screenwriter and essayist, died. He was 91 years old and during the 70 some years of his writing career, he left much behind for us to remember. Harper Collins Publishers said, “Bradbury inspired generations of readers to dream, think and create."
I know that’s true in my case. I’ve always enjoyed his stories, but my absolute favorite has changed. In my early teens I loved, “Something Wicked This Way Comes,” and “The Martian Chronicles.” Later, I adored, “Illustrated Man,” and “I Sing the Body Electric and Other Short Stories”. In my 20s, I found “Dandelion Wine” and now my passion is “Zen and the Art of Writing.”


Knowing there won't be any more of his stories, I feel the loss of his passing and I’d like to say, “Goodbye and thanks.”


In tribute, I’ll share 13 of his well-known quotes.


  1. Don't think. Thinking is the enemy of creativity. It's self-conscious, and anything self-conscious is lousy. You can't try to do things. You simply must do things.
  2. I know you've heard it a thousand times before. But it's true - hard work pays off. If you want to be good, you have to practice, practice, practice. If you don't love something, then don't do it.
  3. And what, you ask, does writing teach us?
    First and foremost, it reminds us that we are alive and that it is a gift and a privilege, not a right. We must earn life once it has been awarded us. Life asks for rewards back because it has favored us with animation.
    So while our art cannot, as we wish it could, save us from wars, privation, envy, greed, old age, or death, it can revitalize us amidst it all.
  4. I’m interested in having fun with ideas, throwing them up in the air like confetti and then running under them.
  5. People ask me to predict the future, when all I want to do is prevent it. Better yet, build it. Predicting the future is much too easy, anyway. You look at the people around you, the street you stand on, the visible air you breathe, and predict more of the same. To hell with more. I want better.
  6. That’s the great secret of creativity. You treat ideas like cats: you make them follow you.
  7. My stories run up and bite me on the leg - I respond by writing down everything that goes on during the bite. When I finish, the idea lets go and runs off.
  8. We are cups, constantly and quietly being filled. The trick is, knowing how to tip ourselves over and let the beautiful stuff out.
  9. Without libraries what have we? We have no past and no future.
  10. You fail only if you stop writing.
  11. When I wrote the novel "Something Wicked This Way Comes", the first draft was a hundred and fifty thousand words. So I went through and cut out fifty thousand. It’s important to get out of your own way. Clean the kindling away, the rubbish. Make it clear.
  12.  I have what I call the theater of morning inside my head, all these voices talking to me. When they come up with a good metaphor, then I jump out of bed and trap them before they’re gone.
  13.   Every so often, late at night, I come downstairs, open one of my books, read a paragraph and say, My God. I sit there and cry because I feel that I’m not responsible for any of this. It’s from God. And I’m so grateful, so, so grateful.
The Los Angeles Times credits Ray Bradbury with penning more than 27 novels and 600 short stories. That’s amazing.—he was an amazing author. Did you ever read his work? Do you have a favorite? Please share.

Sources

22 comments:

  1. Those are great quotes. I will have to look for that Zen and the Art of Writing book. Thank you for sharing these!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. I think you'll like Zen and the Art of Writing. I find it inspiring.

      Delete
  2. I read lots of Ray Bradbury years ago and Kurt Vonnegut. I loved reading these and especially liked #8.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Colleen,
      I like number 8 too, but then I like all the quotes. Thanks for commenting.

      Delete
  3. This is wonderful! He was a true give to the world. I particularly love 11 and 13.

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    1. Cindy,
      I'm with you. Ray Bradbury was a gifted writer and his work did indeed make my world brighter.

      Delete
  4. What an interesting post! Thanks for stopping by : )

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  5. I loved "Illustrated Man". Great quotes. Thanks for this.

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    Replies
    1. I'm with you. I actually have "Illustrated Man" on request. It's been a while since I've looked at it. Thanks for stopping by.

      Delete
  6. Wonderful tribute!

    Have a great T-13!
    http://harrietandfriends.com/2012/07/what-women-were-more-apt-to-feel-road-age-t-13/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks I am Harriet,
      Since you're the master at the informative blog, your approval means a lot to me.

      Delete
  7. #6 was my favorite. Ideas are like cats. Excellent!

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    Replies
    1. Yep. Ideas and cats--how could that be wrong?
      Thanks for visiting.

      Delete
  8. Anyone who doesn't take this advice to heart is destined to be a second-rate writer.

    I, too, posted advice this week. Salute!

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  9. I'm with you, Ron. I'll stop over and read your advice now. Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I love all the quotes. I tried to pick a favorite from that list and have failed. They are all so terrific.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Brinda,
      I appreciate you reading my post.

      Delete
  11. These are really awesome quotes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Shelley,
      I think Ray Bradbury was an awesome writer.

      Delete

 
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