The hardest time to write is around two in the morning, when it might still be reasonable to turn in. Your throat starts to hurt; you’re sure you’re getting sick; your head feels like a sponge. . . . After 2:30 or so—well, there’s something that happens when it’s late enough.
by Edward Porter
This democracy of narrative importance makes The Known World a favorite in the academy . . . [W]hat’s more, the novel’s egalitarian agenda extends to the worst of its characters as well as the best—it levels in both directions.
As I am trying to have a business conversation with someone who is trying to rip me off in some fabulous and hilarious way, there is always a little figure on my shoulder saying, “Calm down, calm down, because this is going to be in your book.”
by Nicki Leone
The kitchens … are the small domains of the servant classes and the stage for their dramas. Ruled by the cook, presided over by the valet, they are where those in favor lord it over those in disgrace, and where those with ambition do their best to climb over the backs of those in decline.