Google can bring you back 100,000 answers; a librarian can bring you back the right one.

—Neil Gaiman on Libraries (by imcpl)

Good contemporary teen fiction shows real life at its worst, but also at its best. Giving young adults knowledge, and therefore power, through reading is vital. Adolescence is no rosy Garden of Eden, it’s a tumultuous and difficult time and reading about those dark times may help you navigate your way just a tiny bit more easily into adulthood. Compared to the real world, books are a pretty safe place to be. So long live the dark side.
Author Lee Child claims crime fiction gratifies “a desire for safety and security and the rule of law”. “In the decade following 9/11, I believe crime fiction has become more important in people’s lives,”
Your library is your portrait.
But there is also a certain power and prestige in being the literary executor of a famous writer. People pay heed to one’s words, come cap-in-hand to one’s door with requests, and the trustee of manuscripts is free to grant or deny favours with a lordly nod or dismissive gesture. It is a power jealously guarded and sometimes remorselessly implemented. State censorship in the West might be dead but private censorship is alive and flourishing.
Of course, the previous argument is valid only if, like me, you have always loved reading a little too much and believe that every book changes you. But the effects of e-readers on the publishing industry are widespread, even for someone who would never download A Pluralistic Universe.
She received her last rejection letter in February 2010. Hocking says she hasn’t kept the letter, which is a crying shame because it would surely have been an invaluable piece of self-publishing memorabilia. As far as she can remember, the last “thanks-but-no-thanks” came from a literary agent in the UK. If that agent is reading this article, please don’t beat yourself up about this. We all make mistakes …
To me, the most interesting question about the whole issue is whether the kind of learning that Johnson focuses on in the book outweighs the potentially negative aspects of what is generally thought of as our dumbed down and getting dumber culture…in some ways, it’s a question of the importance of how we learn versus what we learn.
Books can steady a chair and a soul.
My goal in life is not fame or fortune. It is simply to one day own a library with a ladder.
May your coming year be filled with magic and dreams and good madness. I hope you read some fine books and kiss someone who thinks you’re wonderful, and don’t forget to make some art — write or draw or build or sing or live as only you can. And I hope, somewhere in the next year, you surprise yourself.

«The Fringe Benefits of Failure, and the Importance of Imagination»

It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all – in which case, you fail by default.

—J.K. Rowling Speaks at Harvard Commencement (by Harvard Magazine). [Full-text speech]

Date a girl who reads. …

Fail her. Because a girl who reads knows that failure always leads up to the climax. Because girls who understand that all things will come to end. That you can always write a sequel. That you can begin again and again and still be the hero. That life is meant to have a villain or two.

The first image recognised as Austen was a watercolour painted by her sister. That sketch was then adapted for the front cover of her 1870 biography by artist James Andrews. The portrait is described by Byrne as “very Victorian, sentimentalised and saccharine”.