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Best Flannery O’Connor Quotes

Flannery O’Connor Quotes About Writing, Death, Eucharist, Love, The South, Faith, Grotesque, Jesus, Grace & Humility! Among the finest short story writers of the twentieth century, Flannery O’Connor is regarded as one of the best. In her writing, she dealt with religious topics and southern culture. She was born in Savannah, Georgia, on March 25, 1925. She had a difficult childhood, and as a teenager, she lost her father to systemic lupus erythematosus—O’Connor first showed her writing prowess in her school newspapers.

Flannery O'Connor Quotes

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The Georgia State College for Women graduated with a bachelor’s degree in sociology and English literature. Aside from those experiences, she studied under Robert Fitzgerald at the Iowa Writers Workshop. Following graduation in 1947, O’Connor pursued a literary career, spending many months at Yaddo, an artists’ retreat in Saratoga Springs, New York. Her upbringing influenced her writing as a Catholic in the Deep South.

Religion was a frequent element in her writing, and the primary characters of her first and second books were preachers in their own right. But O’Connor is most known for her short tales, which have appeared in a number of collections, Such as Everything That Rises Must Converge (1965) and A Good Man Is Hard To Find and Other Stories (1955). When he was 39 years old, O’Connor passed away due to a lupus flare-up. She has received several awards for her writing, including the O. Henry Award in 1957 and the National Book Award in 1972. Her stories are set in southern settings and include flawed individuals that raise questions about morality and ethics.

Best Flannery O’Connor Quotes

1. “A story is a way to say something that can’t be said any other way, and it takes every word in the story to say what the meaning is.”– Flannery O’Connor.

2. “The writer should never be ashamed of staring. There is nothing that does not require his attention.”– Flannery O’Connor.

3. “Everywhere I go, I’m asked if I think the universities stifle writers. My opinion is that they don’t stifle enough of them.”– Flannery O’Connor.

4. “In yourself right now is all the place you’ve got.”– Flannery O’Connor.

5. “‘Nothing is like it used to be, lady,’ he said. ‘The world is almost rotten.’”– Flannery O’Connor.

6. “It is the business of the artist to uncover the strangeness of truth.”– Flannery O’Connor.

7. “Push back against the age as hard as it pushes against you.”– Flannery O’Connor.

8. “I write to discover what I know.”– Flannery O’Connor.

9. “There is something in us, as storytellers and as listeners to stories, that demands the redemptive act, that demands that what falls at least be offered the chance to be restored.”– Flannery O’Connor.

10. “The writer operates at a peculiar crossroads where time and place and eternity somehow meet. His problem is to find that location.”– Flannery O’Connor.

11. “Manners are of such great consequence to the novelist that any kind will do.”– Flannery O’Connor.

12. “I can, with one eye squinted, take it all as a blessing.”– Flannery O’Connor.

13. “To know oneself is, above all, to know what one lacks.”– Flannery O’Connor.

14. “When in Rome, do as you done in Milledgeville.”– Flannery O’Connor.

15. “I don’t deserve any credit for turning the other cheek as my tongue is always in it.”– Flannery O’Connor.

16. “I am not afraid that the book will be controversial, I’m afraid it will not be controversial.”– Flannery O’Connor.

17. “The meaning of fiction is not abstract meaning but experienced meaning.”– Flannery O’Connor.

18. “The modern hero is the outsider. His experience is rootless. He can go anywhere.”– Flannery O’Connor.

19. “The serious writer has always taken the flaw in human nature for his starting point, usually the flaw in an otherwise admirable character.”– Flannery O’Connor.

20. “The Southerner is usually tolerant of those weaknesses that proceed from innocence.”– Flannery O’Connor.

21. “All human nature vigorously resists grace because grace changes us and the change is painful.”– Flannery O’Connor.

22. “Today novels are considered to be entirely concerned with the social or economic or psychological forces that they will by necessity exhibit, or with those details of daily life that are for the good novelist only means to some deeper end.”– Flannery O’Connor.

23. “People without hope not only don’t write novels, but what is more to the point, they don’t read them.”– Flannery O’Connor.

24. “The novelist is required to create the illusion of a whole world with believable people in it, and the chief difference between the novelist who is an orthodox Christian and the novelist who is merely a naturalist is that the Christian novelist lives in a larger universe.”– Flannery O’Connor.

25. “Total non-retention has kept my education from being a burden to me.”– Flannery O’Connor.

26. “A God you understood would be less than yourself.”– Flannery O’Connor.

27. “Writing a novel is a terrible experience, during which the hair often falls out and the teeth decay.”– Flannery O’Connor.

28. “The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it.”– Flannery O’Connor.

29. “When a reader reads a novel, he wants either his sense tormented or his spirits raised. He wants to be transported, instantly, either to mock damnation or a mock innocence.”– Flannery O’Connor.

30. “The straightforward manner is seldom equal to the complications of the good subject. There may never be anything new to say, but there is always a new way to say it, and since, in art, the way of saying a thing becomes a part of what is said, every work of art is unique and  requires fresh attention.”– Flannery O’Connor.

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