Alasdair Gray Quotes

Alasdair Gray (born 28 December 1934) is a Scottish writer and artist. His most acclaimed work is his first novel, Lanark, published in 1981 and written over a period of almost 30 years. It is now regarded as a classic, and was described by The Guardian as "one of the landmarks of 20th-century fiction." His novel Poor Things (1992) won the Whitbread Novel Award and the Guardian Fiction Prize. He describes himself as a civic nationalist (albeit one deeply critical of English immigration into Scotland) and a republican

Read more about this author on Wikipedia

Alasdair Gray


Besides, a life without freedom to choose is not worth having.

Alasdair Gray


Movement turns dead dogs into maggots and daisies, and flour butter sugar an egg and a tablespoon of milk into Abernethy biscuits, and spermatozoa and ovaries into fishy little plants growing babyward if we take no care to stop them.

Alasdair Gray


Life becomes a habit. You get up, dress, eat, go tae work, clock in etcetera etcetera automatically, and think about nothing but the pay packet on Friday and the booze-up last Saturday. Life's easy when you're a robot.

Alasdair Gray


Baxter knows a lot more than I do, I told her.Yes, said Baxter, but I will never tell people all of it.

Alasdair Gray


I distrust speech therapy. Words are the language of lies and evasions. Music cannot lie. Music talks to the heart.

Alasdair Gray


Imaginatively Glasgow exists as a music hall song and a few bad novels.

Alasdair Gray


One day you will tell me how to change what I cannot yet describe without my words swelling HUGE, vowels vanishing, tears washing ink away.

Alasdair Gray


Think of Florence, Paris, London, New York. Nobody visiting them for the first time is a stranger because he's already visited them in paintings, novels, history books and films. But if a city hasn't been used by an artist, not even the inhabitants live there imaginatively.

Alasdair Gray


I ought to have more love before I die. I've not had enough.

Alasdair Gray


Work as if you live in the early days of a better nation.

Alasdair Gray


Glasgow is still full of churches built in the last century. Half of them have been turned into warehouses.

Alasdair Gray


She also said the wicked people needed love as much as good people and were much better at it.

Alasdair Gray


You, dear reader, have now two accounts to choose between and there can be no doubt which is most probable.

Alasdair Gray


She is the swelling sail, trim rigging and bust sunlit deck of our matrimonial yacht. I am the low hull, with the invisible ballast and keel.

Alasdair Gray


Are there many people without illness or disability who sit at home in the evening with clenched fists, continually changing the channel of a television set and wishing they had the courage to roll over the parapet of a high bridge? I bet there are millions of us."

Alasdair Gray