Chamblee54

Author Insults

Posted in Book Reports by chamblee54 on June 23, 2012









These author insults were borrowed from flavorwire. HT to Andrew Sullivan The pictures are from The Library of Congress This is a repost. 25. Gertrude Stein on Ezra Pound “A village explainer. Excellent if you were a village, but if you were not, not.” 24. Virginia Woolf on Aldous Huxley “All raw, uncooked, protesting.” 23. H. G. Wells on George Bernard Shaw “An idiot child screaming in a hospital.” 22. Joseph Conrad on D.H. Lawrence “Filth. Nothing but obscenities.”
21. Lord Byron on John Keats (1820) “Here are Johnny Keats’ piss-a-bed poetry, and three novels by God knows whom… No more Keats, I entreat: flay him alive; if some of you don’t I must skin him myself: there is no bearing the drivelling idiotism of the Mankin.” 20. Vladimir Nabokov on Joseph Conrad “I cannot abide Conrad’s souvenir shop style and bottled ships and shell necklaces of romanticist cliches.” 19. Dylan Thomas on Rudyard Kipling “Mr Kipling … stands for everything in this cankered world which I would wish were otherwise.” 18. Ralph Waldo Emerson on Jane Austen “Miss Austen’s novels . . . seem to me vulgar in tone, sterile in artistic invention, imprisoned in the wretched conventions of English society, without genius, wit, or knowledge of the world. Never was life so pinched and narrow. The one problem in the mind of the writer . . . is marriageableness.” 17. Martin Amis on Miguel Cervantes “Reading Don Quixote can be compared to an indefinite visit from your most impossible senior relative, with all his pranks, dirty habits, unstoppable reminiscences, and terrible cronies. When the experience is over, and the old boy checks out at last (on page 846 — the prose wedged tight, with no breaks for dialogue), you will shed tears all right; not tears of relief or regret but tears of pride. You made it, despite all that ‘Don Quixote’ could do.” 16. Charles Baudelaire on Voltaire (1864) “I grow bored in France — and the main reason is that everybody here resembles Voltaire…the king of nincompoops, the prince of the superficial, the anti-artist, the spokesman of janitresses, the Father Gigone of the editors of Siecle.” 15. William Faulkner on Ernest Hemingway “He has never been known to use a word that might send a reader to the dictionary.” 14. Ernest Hemingway on William Faulkner “Poor Faulkner. Does he really think big emotions come from big words?” 13. Gore Vidal on Truman Capote “He’s a full-fledged housewife from Kansas with all the prejudices.” 12. Oscar Wilde on Alexander Pope “There are two ways of disliking poetry; one way is to dislike it, the other is to read Pope.” 11. Vladimir Nabokov on Ernest Hemingway (1972) “As to Hemingway, I read him for the first time in the early ‘forties, something about bells, balls and bulls, and loathed it.” 10. Henry James on Edgar Allan Poe (1876) “An enthusiasm for Poe is the mark of a decidedly primitive stage of reflection.” 09. Truman Capote on Jack Kerouac “That’s not writing, that’s typing.” 08. Elizabeth Bishop on J.D. Salinger “I HATED [Catcher in the Rye]. It took me days to go through it, gingerly, a page at a time, and blushing with embarrassment for him every ridiculous sentence of the way. How can they let him do it?” 07. D.H. Lawrence on Herman Melville (1923) “Nobody can be more clownish, more clumsy and sententiously in bad taste, than Herman Melville, even in a great book like ‘Moby Dick’….One wearies of the grand serieux. There’s something false about it. And that’s Melville. Oh dear, when the solemn ass brays! brays! brays!” 06. W. H. Auden on Robert Browning “I don’t think Robert Browning was very good in bed. His wife probably didn’t care for him very much. He snored and had fantasies about twelve-year-old girls.” 05. Evelyn Waugh on Marcel Proust (1948) “I am reading Proust for the first time. Very poor stuff. I think he was mentally defective.” 04. Mark Twain on Jane Austen (1898) “I haven’t any right to criticize books, and I don’t do it except when I hate them. I often want to criticize Jane Austen, but her books madden me so that I can’t conceal my frenzy from the reader; and therefore I have to stop every time I begin. Every time I read ‘Pride and Prejudice,’ I want to dig her up and hit her over the skull with her own shin-bone.” 03. Virginia Woolf on James Joyce “[Ulysses is] the work of a queasy undergraduate scratching his pimples.” 02. William Faulkner on Mark Twain (1922) “A hack writer who would not have been considered fourth rate in Europe, who tricked out a few of the old proven sure fire literary skeletons with sufficient local color to intrigue the superficial and the lazy.” 01. D.H. Lawrence on James Joyce (1928) “My God, what a clumsy olla putrida James Joyce is! Nothing but old fags and cabbage stumps of quotations from the Bible and the rest stewed in the juice of deliberate, journalistic dirty-mindedness.” Bonus. Mary McCarthy on Lillian Hellman “Every word she writes is a lie, including and and the.” Bonus two, a comment to the original post.: RomanHans Re “The Cardinal’s Mistress” by Benito Mussolini, Dorothy Parker wrote one of my favorite bon mots: “This is not a book to be tossed aside lightly. It should be thrown with great force.”








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  1. Author Insults | Chamblee54 said, on June 9, 2013 at 5:37 pm

    […] flavorwire. HT to Andrew Sullivan The pictures are from The Library of Congress This is a repost. 25. Gertrude Stein on Ezra Pound “A village explainer. Excellent if you were a village, but if […]


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