Use Your Words: Writers Praising Writers

It's fun to watch the famous quibble from afar, but less appreciated is an author's willingness to openly compliment another. Sure, you see little blurbs on book jackets and throwaway lines in interviews ("Yeah, yeah, I read that"). In the just-released collection Object Lessons: The Paris Review Presents the Art of the Short Story, famous authors took the time to choose another famous author and discuss what they love about the other's work. In the same spirit, FlavorWire has amassed a list of author-on-author quotes that'llmake you wantto reread everything (or pick up something new-to-you).

“[F. Scott Fitzgerald] had one of the rarest qualities in all literature, and it’s a great shame that the word for it has been thoroughly debased by the cosmetic racketeers, so that one is almost ashamed to use it to describe a real distinction. Nevertheless, the word is charm — charm as Keats would have used it. Who has it today? It’s not a matter of pretty writing or clear style. It’s a kind of subdued magic, controlled and exquisite, the sort of thing you get from good string quartettes.” — Raymond Chandler in a letter to Dale Warren, 1950

“This is the farthest thing from a scholarly introduction, because there was nothing scholarly or analytical about my first reading of Lord of the Flies. It was, so far as I can remember, the first book with hands – strong ones that reached out of the pages and seized me by the throat. It said to me, ‘This is not just entertainment; it’s life-or-death.’” – Stephen King in the introduction to the centenary edition of [featured author] William Golding’s classic.

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