Fannie Hurst (1889-1968) spent her earlier years studying people in order to be a great writer, and it paid off. Her writings were infused with political and personal issues that put her in the spotlight and gave her the courage to speak out on controversial matters.
Hurst is noted for her strength and courage to speak out against things others would not dare. She spoke openly and did not think of repercussions, only of those she could help with her words. Her best known work is Imitation of Life, which was twice adapted to film. Although isn’t as well known today as it was in her lifetime, Hurst made quite an impact on culture. In addition, she earned a great deal of money from her writing, becoming one of the most highly paid and sought after female authors of the 1920s and 1930s.
Biographies about Fannie Hurst
- Fannie: The Talent for Success of Writer Fannie Hurst by Brooke Kroeger
- Fannie Hurst Papers 1937-1951 – New York Public Library in New York, NY
- Fannie Hurst Collection – Brandeis University in Waltham, MA
Fannie Hurst Quotes
“I’m not happy when I’m writing, but I’m more unhappy when I’m not.”
“Any writer worth the name is always getting into one thing or getting out of another thing.”
“But suppose, asks the student of the professor, we follow all your structural rules for writing, what about that “something else” that brings the book alive? What is the formula for that? The formula for that is not included in the curriculum.”
“It would be a fallacy to deduce that the slow writer necessarily comes up with superior work. There seems to be scant relationship between prolificness and quality.”
“The creative writer is usually captive to his next book.”
“Some authors have what amounts to a metaphysical approach. They admit to inspiration. Sudden and unaccountable urgencies to write catapult them out of sleep and bed. For myself, I have never awakened to jot down an idea that was acceptable the following morning.”
“Few enjoy noisy overcrowded functions. But they are a gesture of goodwill on the part of host or hostess, and also on the part of guests who submit to them.”
“I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired.”
“It would be a fallacy to deduce that the slow writer necessarily comes up with superior work.”
“Sometimes critics lay on the lash, but mostly they praise. Be that as it may, it was and remains my unhappy faculty to remember verbatim the beatings, no matter how slight my regard for my appraiser, and to forget the praise.”
“I am a ‘bleeder’ under criticism and have not done too well in the matter of controlling the mental hemophilia. It is at least fifteen years since I have read a review of my work, good, bad, or indifferent.”
“Through the years, that dissatisfaction at the core of so-called success continues to gnaw. The short stories, the novels move slowly off my typewriter, keeping me unsatisfied and apprehensive.”
“It is a fine thing to finish a day’s work “on high,” to leave a story on the roll of your typewriter that has come alive. It is heartbreak to return the following morning and find your characters staring at you with unalive eyes. It has been a false birth.”
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