If this person, I kept telling myself, was one of God’s chosen salesmen on earth, then there must be something very wrong about the whole business.
I have a passion for teaching kids to become readers, to become comfortable with a book, not daunted. Books shouldn't be daunting, they should be funny, exciting and wonderful; and learning to be a reader gives a terrific advantage.
So Matilda’s strong young mind continued to grow, nurtured by the voices of all those authors who had sent their books out into the world like ships on the sea. These books gave Matilda a hopeful and comforting message: You are not alone.
The books transported her into new worlds and introduced her to amazing people who lived exciting lives. She went on olden-day sailing ships with Joseph Conrad. She went to Africa with Ernest Hemingway and to India with Rudyard Kipling. She travelled all over the world while sitting in her little room in an English village.
If you are going to get anywhere in life you have to read a lot of books.
You is getting nosier than a parker.
This allowed her two glorious hours sitting quietly by herself in a cozy corner, devouring one book after another. When she had read every single children's book in the place, she started wandering round in search of something else.
A person is a fool to become a writer. His only compensation is absolute freedom.
My father was a Norwegian who came from a small town near Oslo. He broke his arm at the elbow when he was 14, and they amputated it.
All through my school life I was appalled by the fact that masters and senior boys were allowed quite literally to wound other boys, and sometimes very severely.
Prayers were held in Assembly Hall. We all perched in rows on wooden benches while teachers sat up on the platform in armchairs, facing us.
The fine line between roaring with laughter and crying because it's a disaster is a very, very fine line. You see a chap slip on a banana skin in the street and you roar with laughter when he falls slap on his backside. If in doing so you suddenly see he's broken a leg, you very quickly stop laughing and it's not a joke anymore.
All Norwegian children learn to swim when they are very young because if you can't swim it is difficult to find a place to bathe.
I do have a blurred memory of sitting on the stairs and trying over and over again to tie one of my shoelaces, but that is all that comes back to me of school itself.
I shot down some German planes and I got shot down myself, crashing in a burst of flames and crawling out, getting rescued by brave soldiers.
Nobody gets a nervous breakdown or a heart attack from selling kerosene to gentle country folk from the back of a tanker in Somerset.
The Bristol Channel was always my guide, and I was always able to draw an imaginary line from my bed to our house over in Wales. It was a great comfort.
Unless you have been to boarding-school when you are very young, it is absolutely impossible to appreciate the delights of living at home.
A writer of fiction lives in fear. Each new day demands new ideas and he can never be sure whether he is going to come up with them or not.
'Dexter' is a very well-oiled machine; it's just a great show and great to be part of.