Mal Peet Quotes

  • I'm not sure that when I read 'Treasure Island' for the first time, when I was about 10, I understood all the words or what was going on. But that didn't stop me reading it, and I certainly didn't forget it.
  • Writing is a form of licensed madness.
  • I'm going to get hated for saying this, but honestly, fantasy is easy to write because you can do anything. It's like when Raymond Chandler brings in a bloke with a gun when he's stuck - in fantasy, up pops a wizard, and off we go.
  • I can ask for a £25,000 advance, but then you spend a year writing the book, and £25,000 is a loan against sales, and you can easily spend five years earning out. So that's £25,000 for six years.
  • I have to make little movies. I have to sit and film.
  • I didn't consciously make the decision to write an adult novel. I didn't think of it as my riposte to the YA genre.
  • In my seaside town, there is a plethora of benches, each one bearing a little brass plate commemorating a deceased occupant. You sit with ghosts.
  • Normally, I'm a grumpy old man - whenever I read about celebrity, I start to grind my teeth and pull my hair; it seems synonymous with idiocy.
  • What I value in books is lucidity. I want the language to be rich; I love lexical fireworks on the page, but I have to know what it means. I want to be surprised and delighted, not merely baffled.
  • I'm not a great reader of historical fiction; it's not my favourite genre.
  • Fundamentalism - of any variety - is a form of illiteracy, in that it asserts that it is necessary to read only one book.
  • History is the heavy traffic that prevents us from crossing the road. We wait, more or less patiently, for it to pause, so that we can get to the liquor store or the laundromat or the burger bar.
  • Benches and books have things in common beyond the fact that they're generally to do with sitting. Both are forms of public privacy, intimate spaces widely shared.
  • Remember that a good football novel has to have the same ingredients as any other good novel: drama, convincing and interesting characters, a strong story-line, and some kind of magic in the writing.
  • Exposure is about, among other things, the ferocity of the press and the way - in an echo of some of Shakespeare's plays - the modern media creates heroes to destroy them.
  • Football is a bit like chess: it's not just the piece being moved that matters; it's also the effect that move has on all the other pieces.
  • If I were to try to describe the way in which I write, the only word I would use without qualification is 'slowly.'
  • After being rejected for years, I found a publisher for 'Keeper,' and it won prizes, and then I had to write a second and a third book because I kept taking the money and spending it.
  • I'm working with published authors and some very young undergraduates and lots of people in between. They are lovely people, and they can write.
  • I worry about children not having a sense of any direct connection to the past.
  • I don't really see any barrier between teenage fiction and adult literature.
  • I used to play all the time. I would play football when it was light and read when it was dark.