Ernest Hemingway Biography | Inspiration Quotations | Motivation Quotes

Ernest Hemingway
Ernest Hemingway

Ernest Hemingway Motivational Quotations:

  • “I love sleep. My life has the tendency to fall apart when I'm awake, you know?”

  •  “The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places.”

  • “The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them.”

  •  “All things truly wicked start from innocence.”

  •  “An intelligent man is sometimes forced to be drunk to spend time with his fools.”

  •  “There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow men. True nobility lies in being superior to your former self.”

  •  “There is no friend as loyal as a book.”

  •  “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.”

  •  “I like to listen. I have learned a great deal from listening carefully. Most people never listen.”

  •  “Courage is grace under pressure.”

  •  “Never go on trips with anyone you do not love.”

  •  “Always do sober what you said you'd do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut.”

  •  “But man is not made for defeat. A man can be destroyed but not defeated.”

  •  “There is no lonelier man in death, except the suicide, than that man who has lived many years with a good wife and then outlived her. If two people love each other there can be no happy end to it.”

  •  “Happiness in intelligent people is the rarest thing I know.”

  •  “Never mistake motion for action.”

  •  “We are all apprentices in a craft where no one ever becomes a master.”

  •  “Every man's life ends the same way. It is only the details of how he lived and how he died that distinguish one man from another.”

  •  “You see, I am trying in all my stories to get the feeling of the actual life across - not to just depict life - or criticize it - but to actually make it alive. So that when you have read something by me, you actually experience the thing. You can't do this without putting in the bad and the ugly as well as what is beautiful.”

  •  “When people talk, listen completely. Most people never listen.”

  •  “There is no hunting like the hunting of man, and those who have hunted armed men long enough and liked it, never care for anything else thereafter.”

  •  “You're beautiful, like a May fly.”

    Ernest Hemingway

  •  “Time is the least thing we have of.”

  •  “I never had to choose a subject - my subject rather chose me.”

  •  “Man is not made for defeat.”

  •  “For a true writer, each book should be a new beginning where he tries again for something that is beyond attainment. He should always try for something that has never been done or that others have tried and failed. Then sometimes, with great luck, he will succeed.”

  •  “The shortest answer is doing the thing.”

  •  “Never think that war, no matter how necessary, nor how justified, is not a crime.”

  •  “The first panacea for a mismanaged nation is inflation of the currency; the second is war. Both bring a temporary prosperity; both bring a permanent ruin. But both are the refuge of political and economic opportunists.”

  •  “As you get older it is harder to have heroes, but it is sort of necessary.”

  •  “Why should anybody be interested in some old man who was a failure?”

  •  “From things that have happened and from things as they exist and from all things that you know and all those you cannot know, you make something through your invention that is not a representation but a whole new thing truer than anything true and alive, and you make it alive, and if you make it well enough, you give it immortality.”

  •  “I rewrote the ending to 'Farewell to Arms,' the last page of it, thirty-nine times before I was satisfied.” 

  • “The only thing that could spoil a day was people. People were always the limiters of happiness except for the very few that were as good as spring itself.”

  •  “In modern war... you will die like a dog for no good reason.”

  •  “My aim is to put down on paper what I see and what I feel in the best and simplest way.”

  •  “Hesitation increases in relation to risk in equal proportion to age.”

  •  “When writing a novel a writer should create living people; people not characters. A character is a caricature.”

  •  “Prose is architecture, not interior decoration, and the Baroque is over.”

  •  “What is moral is what you feel good after, and what is immoral is what you feel bad after.”​

    Ernest Hemingway

  •  “Somebody just back of you while you are fishing is as bad as someone looking over your shoulder while you write a letter to your girl.”
  •  “They wrote in the old days that it is sweet and fitting to die for one's country. But in modern war, there is nothing sweet nor fitting in your dying. You will die like a dog for no good reason.”

  •  “Writing and travel broaden your ass if not your mind and I like to write standing up.”

  •  “All good books have one thing in common - they are truer than if they had really happened.”

  •  “Cowardice... is almost always simply a lack of ability to suspend functioning of the imagination.”

  •  “Things may not be immediately discernible in what a man writes, and in this sometimes he is fortunate; but eventually they are quite clear, and by these and the degree of alchemy that he possesses, he will endure or be forgotten.”

  •  “To be a successful father... there's one absolute rule: when you have a kid, don't look at it for the first two years.”

  •  “For a long time now I have tried simply to write the best I can. Sometimes I have good luck and write better than I can.”

  •  “All modern American literature comes from one book by Mark Twain called Huckleberry Finn.”

  •  “Decadence is a difficult word to use since it has become little more than a term of abuse applied by critics to anything they do not yet understand or which seems to differ from their moral concepts.”

  •  “On the 'Star,' you were forced to learn to write a simple declarative sentence. This is useful to anyone. Newspaper work will not harm a young writer and could help him if he gets out of it in time.”

  •  “A man's got to take a lot of punishment to write a really funny book.”

  •  “Once we have a war there is only one thing to do. It must be won. For defeat brings worse things than any that can ever happen in war.”

  •  “I know now that there is no one thing that is true - it is all true.”

  •  “It's none of their business that you have to learn how to write. Let them think you were born that way.”

  •  “When you go to war as a boy, you have a great illusion of immortality. Other people get killed, not you... Then, when you are badly wounded the first time, you lose that illusion, and you know it can happen to you.”

  •  “There is no rule on how to write. Sometimes it comes easily and perfectly; sometimes it's like drilling rock and then blasting it out with charges.”

  •  “There's no one thing that is true. They're all true.”

  •  “I wake up in the morning and my mind starts making sentences, and I have to get rid of them fast - talk them or write them down.”

  •  “About morals, I know only that what is moral is what you feel good after and what is immoral is what you feel bad after.”

  •  “I've tried to reduce profanity but I reduced so much profanity when writing the book that I'm afraid not much could come out. Perhaps we will have to consider it simply as a profane book and hope that the next book will be less profane or perhaps more sacred.”

  •  “That terrible mood of depression of whether it's any good or not is what is known as The Artist's Reward.”

  •  “No weapon has ever settled a moral problem. It can impose a solution but it cannot guarantee it to be a just one.”

  •  “All our words from loose using have lost their edge.”

  •  “For a war to be just three conditions are necessary - public authority, just cause, right motive.”

  •  “A serious writer is not to be confounded with a solemn writer. A serious writer may be a hawk or a buzzard or even a popinjay, but a solemn writer is always a bloody owl.”

  •  “I learned never to empty the well of my writing, but always to stop when there was still something there in the deep part of the well, and let it refill at night from the springs that fed it.”

  •  “There are events which are so great that if a writer has participated in them his obligation is to write truly rather than assume the presumption of altering them with invention.”

  •  “You can write any time people will leave you alone and not interrupt you. Or, rather, you can if you will be ruthless enough about it. But the best writing is certainly when you are in love.”

  •  “I'm not going to get into the ring with Tolstoy.”

  •  “'For Whom the Bell Tolls' was a problem which I carried on each day. I knew what was going to happen in principle. But I invented what happened each day I wrote.”

  •  “If you have a success you have it for the wrong reasons. If you become popular it is always because of the worst aspects of your work.”

  •  “When I have an idea, I turn down the flame, as if it were a little alcohol stove, as low as it will go. Then it explodes and that is my idea.”

  •  “I know only that what is moral is what you feel good after and what is immoral is what you feel bad after.”

  •  “Wars are caused by undefended wealth.”

  •  “Madame, all stories, if continued far enough, end in death, and he is no true-story teller who would keep that from you.”

  •  “Switzerland is a small, steep country, much more up and down than sideways, and is all stuck over with large brown hotels built on the cuckoo clock style of architecture.”

  •  “Personal columnists are jackals and no jackal has been known to live on grass once he had learned about meat - no matter who killed the meat for him.”

  •  “I always rewrite each day up to the point where I stopped. When it is all finished, naturally you go over it. You get another chance to correct and rewrite when someone else types it, and you see it clean in type. The last chance is in the proofs. You're grateful for these different chances.”

  •  “Bullfighting is the only art in which the artist is in danger of death and in which the degree of brilliance in the performance is left to the fighter's honor.”

  •  “I don't like to write like God. It is only because you never do it, though, that the critics think you can't do it.”

  •  “Ezra was right half the time, and when he was wrong, he was so wrong you were never in any doubt about it.”



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