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Tea Obreht's Quotes

Tea Obreht profile photo

Born: 1985-09-30
Profession: Novelist
Nation: Serbian
Biography of Tea Obreht

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A family has its own rituals and its own superstitions.

Tags: Family, Rituals

At the end of the day, it's about the reader's attachment to and belief in the magical elements that make or break magical realism.

Tags: Belief, Break, End

I am very interested in place, and the influences of place on characters.

Tags: Characters, Interested, Place

I do no writing while I'm in Belgrade visiting my grandma.

Tags: Grandma, While, Writing

I grew up in Cyprus and Egypt, these fantastic places I remember fondly.

Tags: Egypt, Places, Remember

I like dark subject matter. I'm not sure what that means about me!

Tags: Dark, Matter, Means

I think the mythology of death really ran away with me when I was very young.

Tags: Away, Death, Young

I've always written about animals. I'm still trying to process why that is.

Tags: Process, Trying, Why

In the mess of moving from place to place, I skipped two grades in the space of one year.

Tags: Moving, Place, Year

My family lived in Egypt from 1993 to 1996.

Tags: Egypt, Family, Lived

My grandfather and I were very close.

Tags: Close

My road to publishing actually came through a colleague who connected me to my agent, and the faculty at Cornell was very supportive.

Tags: Actually, Connected, Road

The best fiction stays with you and changes you.

Tags: Best, Changes, Fiction

What inspires me most to write is the act of traveling.

Tags: Act, Traveling, Write

When you're in a place, the details you focus on are different than details you focus on when you're writing about it.

Tags: Focus, Place, Writing

You never know what's going to happen in your life, and you never know what's going to happen in someone else's life either.

Tags: Happen, Life, Someone

A lot of writers that I know have told me that the first book you write, you write about your childhood, whether you want to or not. It calls you back.

Tags: Book, Whether, Write

Being taken seriously, for a young writer, is a wonderful form of encouragement, but at the same time, I don't think one should ever feel like attempting a kind of artistic endeavor is beyond your scope just because of age or inexperience.

Tags: Age, Time, Young

For me it was a lot harder to come to terms with the death of my grandfather than it was to come to terms with what's happened to the former Yugoslavia.

Tags: Death, Happened, Harder

In terms of people that I know, my grandmother and my mother are huge influences on my writing life because they are both massively supportive and always have been of my career.

Tags: Life, Mother, Writing

When I hit a block, regardless of what I am writing, what the subject matter is, or what's going on in the plot, I go back and I read Pablo Neruda's poetry. I don't actually speak Spanish, so I read it translation. But I always go back to Neruda. I don't know why, but it calms me, calms my brain.

Tags: Brain, Poetry, Writing

When I was eight years old, I wrote a paragraph-long short story about a goat on my mother's hundred-pound, black-and-white-screen laptop. The story came about largely because I liked the way the word 'goat' looked on the page, but I decided then and there that I wanted to be a writer. That desire never changed.

Tags: Mother, Old, Short

Refusing to ask for help when you need it is refusing someone the chance to be helpful.

Tags: Chance, Help, Someone

I love walking down the street and seeing faces and drama and happiness and sadness and dirt and cleanliness.

Tags: Happiness, Love, Sadness

There's more to light than the opposite of dark.

Tags: Dark, Light, Opposite

The most important thing to a lot of people, is to belong to something that's hip or whatever. To be a part of something that's not society, just a clique.

Tags: Belong, Society, Whatever
Much more quotes by Tea Obreht below the page.

Never mind a world that can't see past brutality.

Tags: Brutality, Mind, Past

Once they're on paper, they're gone. I like to do as much with the words, as far as image goes.

Tags: Far, Once, Words

People are strange. We're all morticians. Hey, what's on TV?

Tags: Hey, Strange, Tv

Secrecy is the enemy of efficiency, but don't let anyone know it.

Tags: Anyone, Enemy, Secrecy

I could never be a country person, sitting around trees trying to write a song. I would rather be in the middle of society, whether it's growing or crumbling.

Tags: Country, Society, Trying

Sometimes you want to run away, sometimes you think you do, but you never had a dream like this before and you don't want to ask for more, sometimes you leave a mark before you know the score.

Tags: Away, Dream, Sometimes

They're caught where there's no way out or where you can't see out. What are you going to do about it? I don't have the answer. If I did there would be no insane asylums.

Tags: Answer, Caught, Insane

Your high points and your low points. High points don't last that long, it's a high and it happens. It's great at the moment but you really can't live on it.

Tags: Great, Last, Moment

It is vain to do with more what can be done with fewer.

Tags: Done, Fewer, Vain

Plurality should not be posited without necessity.

Tags: Necessity, Plurality