Ken Follett quotes

  • Why do you have to be the same as the others? ...Most of them are stupid.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Stupid

  • She loved him because he had brought her back to life. She had been like a caterpillar in a cocoon, and he had drawn her out and shown her that she was a butterfly.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Love #Butterfly #Cocoons

  • Having faith in God did not mean sitting back and doing nothing. It meant believing you would find success if you did your best honestly and energetically.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Believe #Mean #Doing Nothing

  • In my books, women often solve the problem. Even if the woman is not the hero, she's a strong character. She does change the plot. She'll often rescue the male character from some situation.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Strong Women #Book #Hero

  • Trusting someone was like holding a little water in your cupped hands - it was so easy to spill the water, and you could never get it back.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Hands #Water #Littles

  • When you've lost everything, you've got nothing to lose.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Nothing To Lose #Lost

  • Nevertheless, the book gave Jack a feeling he had never had before, that the past was like a story, in which one thing led to another, and the world was not a boundless mystery, but a finite thing that could be comprehended.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Book #Past #Feelings

  • Proportion is the heart of beauty.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Heart #Proportion

  • Hard work should be rewarded by good food.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Hard Work #Good Food #Should

  • The thriller is the most popular literary genre of the 20th century.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Century #Thrillers #Genre

  • She wanted to say 'I love you like a thunderstorm, like a lion, like a helpless rage'...
    -- Ken Follett

    #Love You #Lions #Rage

  • Why was it, Lloyd wondered, that the people who wanted to destroy everything good about their country were the quickest to wave the national flag?
    -- Ken Follett

    #Country #People #Flags

  • When you're thinking, please remember this: excessive pride is a familiar sin, but a man may just as easily frustrate the will of God through excessive humility.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Humility #Pride #Men

  • We’re all good when it suits us, he used to say: that doesn’t count. It’s when you want so badly to do something wrong—when you’re about to make a fortune from a dishonest deal, or kiss the lovely lips of your neighbor’s wife, or tell a lie to get yourself out of terrible trouble—that’s when you need the rules. Your integrity is like a sword, he would say: you shouldn’t wave it until you’re about to put it to the test.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Lying #Integrity #Kissing

  • President Wilson says a leader must treat public opinion the way a sailor deals with the wind, using it to blow the ship in one direction or another, but never trying to go directly against it.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Blow #Wind #One Direction

  • A baby was like a revolution, Grigori thought: you could start one, but you could not control how it would turn out.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Baby #Revolution #Turns

  • Man who betrayed you once would betray you twice.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Men #Betrayed #Betray

  • I read mostly fiction, a lot of 19th-century novels.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Fiction #Century #Novel

  • Ethel said: "Lloyd, there's someone here you may remember-" Daisy could not restrain herself. She ran to Lloyd and threw herself into his arms. She hugged him. She looked into his green eyes, then kissed his brown cheeks and his broken nose and then his mouth. "I love you, Lloyd," she sad madly. "I love you, I love you, I love you." "I love you, too, Daisy," he said. Behind her, Daisy heard Ethel's wry voice. "You do remember, I see.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Love You #Eye #Voice

  • But desperate people find courage.
    -- Ken Follett

    #People #Desperate

  • The boundary between philosophy and fiction is not as clear cut as you may think and the two definitely interact..
    -- Ken Follett

    #Philosophy #Cutting #Thinking

  • The degradation to which you subject others comes back, sooner or later, to haunt you,
    -- Ken Follett

    #Degradation #Sooner Or Later #Subjects

  • I have quite a few different Bibles. Having rejected my parents' religion, I still think the King James Bible is the most important work of literature in English. None of us can help being influenced by it.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Kings #Thinking #Parent

  • One of the hardest things for me, now that I'm famous, is finding people who can read my stuff and give me an honest critique.
    -- Ken Follett

    #People #Giving #Stuff

  • It's great that in the German language I've sold almost 30 million books. Isn't that amazing?
    -- Ken Follett

    #Book #Language

  • I want to tell a story that makes the reader always want to see what will happen next.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Stories #Want #Next

  • I might not be a good socialist, any more than I'm a good Christian, but I am one.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Christian #Might #Good Christian

  • I like reading history, and actually most authors enjoy the research part because it is, after all, easier than writing.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Reading #Writing #Research

  • I am very fond of Edith Wharton. She's quite high brow but also a great storyteller. My favorite is 'The House of Mirth.' I also like 'The Reef.
    -- Ken Follett

    #House #Mirth #My Favorite

  • I aim to be translucent, so you don't notice the words, just their meaning. I haven't much insight into people's motivations.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Motivation #People #Insight

  • We all now tell stories by cutting from one dramatic scene to the next, whereas Victorian novelists felt free to write long passages of undramatic summary.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Writing #Cutting #Long

  • When I'm writing a woman character, I don't think, 'What would a woman do?' I just think, 'What would this character do in this situation?
    -- Ken Follett

    #Writing #Character #Thinking

  • I went and looked at one of these great cathedrals one day, and I was blown away by it. From there I became interested in how cathedrals were built, and from there I became interested in the society that built the medieval cathedral. It occurred to me at some point that the story of the building of a cathedral could be a great popular novel.
    -- Ken Follett

    #One Day #Stories #Medieval

  • Hunger is the best seasoning.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Hunger

  • She looked at his young face, so full of concern and tenderness; and she remembered why she had run away from everyone else and sought solitude here. She yearned to kiss him, and she saw the answering longing in his eyes. Every fiber of her body told her to throw herself into his arms, but she knew what she had to do. She wanted to say, I love you like a thunderstorm, like a lion, like a helpless rage; but instead she said: "I think I'm going to marry Alfred.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Running #Love You #Eye

  • After a certain point, most people, including editors, will tell you everything you do is great.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Editors #People #Certain

  • Culture clash is terrific drama.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Drama #Culture #Clash

  • I wanted to be some kind of captain of industry. Then I wanted to be in advertising, and then I wanted to be a newspaper reporter.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Captains #Advertising #Kind

  • Movies have influenced all writers, not just thriller writers.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Bedtime #Thrillers

  • An awful lot of thriller writers write women rather badly. So just doing it OK gets a lot of credit.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Fear #Writing #Credit

  • Thrillers have been traditionally very masculine books; the women characters often rather decorative.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Book #Character #Thrillers

  • To someone standing in the nave, looking down the length of the church toward the east, the round window would seem like a huge sun exploding into innumerable shards of gorgeous color.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Color #Church #Sun

  • I’ve worked with volunteers before,” he began. “It’s important not to… not to treat them like servants. We may feel that they are laboring to obtain a heavenly reward, and should therefore work harder than they would for money; but they don’t necessarily take that attitude. They feel they’re working for nothing, and doing a great kindness to us thereby; and if we seem ungrateful they will work slowly and make mistakes. It will be best to rule them with a light touch.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Attitude #Kindness #Mistake

  • The most expensive part of building is the mistakes.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Mistake #Building

  • He had been granted his life's wish-but conditionally.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Wish #Granted

  • Knotty theological questions are the least worrying of problems to me. Why? Because they will be resolved in the hereafter, and meanwhile they can be safely shelved.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Worry #Problem #Theological

  • His aim was the glory of God, but the glory of Philip pleased him too.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Glory #Aim #Glory Of God

  • The CIA's research program is described in a book called The Search for the Manchurian Candidate.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Book #Swag #Research

  • What she needs,' Tom said aloud 'is a husband.' Agnes said crisply, 'Well, she can't have mine.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Husband #Needs #Said

  • you should first follow the plow if you want to dance the harvest jig.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Want #Firsts #Harvest

  • Fear could paralyse. Action was the antidote.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Fear #Action #Antidote

  • Everybody takes what they life from the teachings of the church, and ignores the parts that don't suit them.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Teaching #Church #Suits

  • The duck swallows the worm, the fox kills the duck, the men shoot the fox, and the devil hunts the men.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Men #Ducks #Devil

  • What news? There's nothing to tell. I'm a nun.
    -- Ken Follett

    #News #Nun

  • In both cases, weakness and scruples had defeated strength and ruthlessness.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Weakness #Ruthlessness #Defeated

  • You never know," Jack said speculatively. "There may come a time when savages like William Hamleigh aren't in power; when the laws protect the ordinary people instead of enslaving them; when the king makes peace instead of war. Think of that - a time when towns in England don't need walls!
    -- Ken Follett

    #Kings #Wall #War

  • I imagined it. I wrote it. But I guess I never thought I'd see it.
    -- Ken Follett

  • It was an odd relationship, but then she was an extraordinary woman: a prioress who doubted much of what the church taught; an acclaimed healer who rejected medicine as practised by physicians; and a nun who made enthusiastic love to her man whenever she could get away with it. If I wanted a normal relationship, Merthin told himself, I should have picked a normal girl.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Girl #Men #Medicine

  • It was an odd thing to do, to stand in a street in the hope of seeing someone who hardly knew him, but he did not want to move.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Moving #Odd Things #Want

  • The research is the easiest. The outline is the most fun. The first draft is the hardest, because every word of the outline has to be fleshed out. The rewrite is very satisfying.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Fun #Research #Firsts

  • But the lesson of Abraham's story is that God demands the best we have to offer, that which is most precious to us.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Stories #Demand #Lessons

  • I started writing stories in my spare time.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Writing #Stories #Spare Time

  • World War II is the greatest drama in human history, the biggest war ever and a true battle of good and evil. I imagine writers will continue to get stories from it, and readers will continue to love them, for many more years.
    -- Ken Follett

    #War #Drama #Years

  • You see, all that I ever held dear has been taken from me," she said in a matter-of-fact tone. "And when you've lost everything-" Her facade began to crumble, and her voice broke, but she made herself carry on. "When you've lost everything, you've got nothing to lose.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Taken #Voice #Matter

  • Jack Reacher is a brilliant movie
    -- Ken Follett

    #Brilliant

  • My favorite period is World War II, and I'm in the middle of writing my fourth novel set in that era.
    -- Ken Follett

    #War #Writing #World

  • Why did people manufacture trouble when there was already so much of it in the world?
    -- Ken Follett

    #People #World #Trouble

  • It was the most romantic plane ever made.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Romantic Love #Most Romantic #Made

  • There was a very serious communist strain among American intellectuals before the war. America was a more tolerant place in those days, and Communists were not treated as pariahs. That ended with the McCarthy era.
    -- Ken Follett

    #War #America #Eras

  • I don't think there's any great mystery to writing female characters, so long as you talk to them. If you lived in a monastery and never met any women, maybe it would be difficult.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Writing #Character #Thinking

  • There is a real connection between Philosopy and fiction.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Real #Connections #Fiction

  • There is no point in asking a man a question until you have established whether he has any reason to lie to you.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Lying #Men #Asking

  • Without books I would not have become a vivacious reader, and if you are not a reader you are not a writer.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Book #Vivacious #Reader

  • A very good editor is almost a collaborator.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Editors #Very Good

  • For success, the author must make the reader care about the destiny of the principals, and sustain this anxiety, or suspense, for about 100,000 words.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Destiny #Anxiety #Suspense

  • I like to create imaginary characters and events around a real historical situation. I want readers to feel: OK, this probably didn't happen, but it might have.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Real #Character #Historical

  • I use a professional researcher in New York who does all the legwork, all that stuff which would take me days and weeks of calling, waiting for people to call back.
    -- Ken Follett

    #New York #People #Waiting

  • I enjoy learning technical details.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Learning #Details #Enjoy

  • James Bond is quite serious about his drinks and clothing and cigarettes and food and all that sort of thing. There is nothing wry or amused about James Bond.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Ties #Serious #Drink

  • Most of my stories have some basis in fact.
    -- Ken Follett

    #Stories #Facts #Bases

  • I could fall for you in a heartbeat
    -- Ken Follett

    #Fall #Falling For You #Heartbeat