Graham Greene Quotes

Most popular Graham Greene Quotes

Fame is a powerful aphrodisiac.

fame

The trouble is I don't believe my unbelief.
— Graham Greene

beliefs

A family library is a breeding-place for character.

libraries character

Heresy is only another word for freedom of thought.
— Graham Greene

religion

Human nature is not black and white but black and grey.

human nature

The world is not black and white.  More like black and grey.

the world

A book is like a sandy path which keeps the indent of footsteps.

books

In human relations kindness and lies are worth a thousand truths.

honesty kindness lies relationships

The beastly adverb—far more damaging to a writer than an adjective.

parts of speech

Despair is the price one pays for setting oneself an impossible aim.

despair ambition

Isn't disloyalty as much the writer's virtue as loyalty is the soldier's.

writers

A single feat of daring can alter the whole conception of what is possible.

risk-taking

The world was in her heart already, like the small spot of decay in a fruit.
Success is more dangerous than failure, the ripples break over a wider coastline.

success & failure success failure

There is always one moment in childhood when the door opens and lets the future in.

growing up future childhood

He felt the loyalty we feel to unhappiness—the sense that that is where we really belong.

unhappiness

In my experience, after a few months, an author usually feels that his novel is taking control.

authors

He was my idol, but to say he influenced me is a bit absurd—like saying a mountain influenced a mouse.
— Graham Greene Life
It is impossible to go through life without trust: that is to be imprisoned in the worst cell of all, oneself.

trust

It isn't easy for an author to remain a pleasant human being: both success and failure are usually of a crippling kind.

authors

Goodness has only once found a perfect incarnation in a human body and never will again, but evil can always find a home there.

good and evil

The economy of a novelist is a little like that of a careful housewife, who is unwilling to throw away anything that might perhaps serve its turn.

novelists

Insecurity is the worst sense that lovers feel: sometimes the most humdrum desireless marriage seems better. Insecurity twists meanings and poisons trust.

insecurity

Novelists who write for a public are, in my opinion, no good; they've discovered who their readers are and, in submitting to their judgment, they're dishing things up like short-order cooks.

novelists

Champagne, if you are seeking the truth, is better than a lie detector. It encourages a man to be expansive, even reckless, while lie detectors are only a challenge to tell lies successfully.
— Graham Greene

wine alcohol

The main characters in a novel must necessarily have some kinship to the author, they come out of his body as a child comes from the womb, then the umbilical cord is cut, and they grow into independence.

novels

Writing is a form of therapy; sometimes I wonder how all those who do not write, compose or paint can manage to escape the madness, the melancholia, the panic fear which is inherent in the human condition.
— Graham Greene

the human condition writing art

Writing is a form of therapy; sometimes I wonder how all those who do not write, compose, or paint can manage to escape the madness, the melancholia, the panic fear which is inherent in the human situation.

writing