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JAMES M. CAIN QUOTES

American author (1892-1977)

New York is not even a city, it's a congerie of rotten villages.

JAMES M. CAIN, The Paris Review, spring-summer 1978

I write of the wish that comes true - for some reason, a terrifying concept.

JAMES M. CAIN, preface, The Butterfly

That's all it takes, one drop of fear to curdle love into hate.

JAMES M. CAIN, Double Indemnity

Writing a novel is like working on foreign policy. There are problems to be solved. It's not all inspirational.

JAMES M. CAIN, The Paris Review, spring-summer 1978

Stealing a man's wife, that's nothing, but stealing his car, that's larceny.

JAMES M. CAIN, The Postman Always Rings Twice

I make no conscious effort to be tough, or hard-boiled, or grim, or any of the things I am usually called.

JAMES M. CAIN, Three of a Kind

A lot of novelists start late—Conrad, Pirandello, even Mark Twain. When you're young, chess is all right, and music and poetry. But novel-writing is something else. It has to be learned, but it can't be taught. This bunkum and stinkum of college creative writing courses! The academics don't know that the only thing you can do for someone who wants to write is to buy him a typewriter.

JAMES M. CAIN, The Paris Review, spring-summer 1978

Love, when you get fear in it, it's not love any more. It's hate.

JAMES M. CAIN, The Postman Always Rings Twice

A gun is like breath to a drowning man—it has to be drawn in haste.

JAMES M. CAIN, The Paris Review, spring-summer 1978

A home is not a museum. It doesn't have to be furnished with Picasso paintings, or Sheraton suites, or Oriental rugs, or Chinese pottery. But it does have to be furnished with things that mean something to you.

JAMES M. CAIN, Mildred Pierce

Time is the only critic.

JAMES M. CAIN, The Paris Review, spring-summer 1978

Let's get stinko.

JAMES M. CAIN, Mildred Pierce


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