- Quote: “It takes a lot of time to be a genius. You have to sit around so much, doing nothing, really doing nothing.”
- Answer: Pennsylvania-born writer Gertrude Stein spent most of her life in Paris where she wrote novels, plays, and poetry. Perhaps just as notable as the works she produced were the connections and conversations she fostered. Stein regularly hosted a salon in her apartment, with guests like Pablo Picasso, Ernest Hemingway, Henri Matisse, and F. Scott Fitzgerald often in attendance.
- Quote: “There should be a place where only the things you want to happen, happen.”
- Answer: Beloved children’s book author and illustrator Maurice Sendak wrote the line above in his wildly popular book, “Where the Wild Things Are.” Born and raised in New York City, Sendak decided to become an illustrator at 12 after seeing the movie “Fantasia.” His portfolio also includes “In the Night Kitchen,” and “Alligators All Around,” among others.
- Quote: “It is better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation.”
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- Answer: The now-famous author of “Moby-Dick, or The Whale,” Herman Melville never received much acclaim for his work while he was alive. It was the story of the great white whale, the one known by all today, which caused critics to disregard his work, contributing to his downfall as a writer. He continued to find work publishing short stories and traveling to give lectures.
- Quote: “Don’t ever tell anybody anything. If you do, you start missing everybody.”
- Answer: J.D. Salinger is best known for writing “Catcher in the Rye,” a novel centering around the ever-curious, lost, and alienated Holden Caulfield. After the tremendous success of that book, Salinger became reclusive, staying away from the public eye while living in a small New Hampshire town. He published a few story collections after that but was never able to bring another novel to publication in his lifetime.
- Quote: “I have never listened to anyone who criticized my taste in space travel, sideshows or gorillas. When this occurs, I pack up my dinosaurs and leave the room.”
- Answer: Ray Bradbury authored numerous books, including the science-fiction classics “The Martian Chronicles,” and “Fahrenheit 451,” the latter of which offers a window into a future world where the written word is banned. Bradbury worked in other mediums as well and received an Emmy award for “The Halloween Tree,” along with an Oscar nomination for an animated film titled, “Icarus Montgolfier Wright.” Awards for his writing include the Benjamin Franklin Award, the World Fantasy Award for Lifetime Achievement, and the O. Henry Memorial Award.
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