Kate Zambreno quotes

  • I think the key to writing the truth of our existences, so much of this is being incubated online, is examining the conflicts and the messiness, our sometimes dividedness, dealing with gender and other hierarchies, and also our identities outside of them, deeply personal and yet somehow critical and circumspect.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Writing #Thinking #Keys

  • I am worthy of being read. I mean, one has to be convinced of one's genius.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Mean #Genius #Worthy

  • For years and years I carried these notebooks around with me - I had hundreds of pages of notes, these fragments that consisted of biographical anecdotes, diary passages, critical rants, agitations, scenes of my marriage.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Notebook #Years #Agitation

  • All of my wildness is in the writing. I have discovered I have to be orderly and boring in my personal life to be wild in my work.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Writing #Boring #Orderly

  • My writing has always been considered extremely important, even though I make slim-to-no money at it.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Writing #Important #Slim

  • I am home because I am a writer, but sometimes, when I'm not productive (productivity: the expectations of capitalism), I feel like a terrible housewife, or a sick person.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Home #Sick #Expectations

  • I do think that memoirs by women are reviewed differently and considered somewhat outside of the canon.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Thinking #Canon #Memoir

  • I think the female first-person is still dismissed, demonized, especially if the book does not end on an empowering note, especially if the main character is perceived as unlikeable, or too privileged.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Book #Character #Thinking

  • The biographies of the great men see their excesses as signs of their greatness. But Jean Rhys, in her biography, is read as borderline; Anaïs Nin is borderline; Djuna is borderline; etc. etc. Borderline personality disorder being an overwhelmingly gendered diagnosis. I write in Heroines: “The charges of borderline personality disorder are the same charges against girls writing literature, I realize - too emotional, too impulsive, no boundaries."
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Girl #Writing #Greatness

  • I think that writing and publishing are different. I think I will always write; I might not always publish. The idea of not publishing is wonderful!
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Writing #Thinking #Ideas

  • The hope in literature is that we are allowed to be imperfect, to write of our imperfection, without being overly critiqued for being unlikeable.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Writing #Imperfection #Literature

  • I think for a woman, getting older can help, through personal experience, although of course older women are then rendered invisible in our society, another existential crisis.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Thinking #Getting Older #Our Society

  • People are depressed for many reasons, one of which I think is how we have been taught to react to trauma, to stress.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Stress #Thinking #People

  • I try to tell student writers to read as much as possible, not only literature but philosophy, theory, and to form obsessions. There's a big taboo in fiction creative writing workshops against using the self at all, and I think I try to encourage students to write the self, but to connect the self to something larger, which is to be this thinking, seeing, searching, eternally curious person, and that writing can come out of investigating and trying to understand confusion, and doubts, and obsessions.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Philosophy #Writing #Thinking

  • On the whole, most biographies about literary women tend to diagnose them.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Biographies #Whole

  • If one writes the rules then one can contradict oneself. It's all about rhetoric, about official narratives.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Writing #Narrative #Rhetoric

  • I'm exposing faultlines, dealing especially with rhetoric. Showing that heterosexuality is a disease, or at least its inheritance.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Heterosexuality Is #Inheritance #Disease

  • I'm just too lazy. I wish I could be someone that has wild affairs - all of my favorite nonfiction novels are about these wild affairs and postmarital agonistes - but to be honest, I'm someone that doesn't deal well with instability.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Lazy #Wish #Nonfiction

  • I think the mad wives and mistresses are my hysterics - even the fictionalized ones. I want to trace how they were silenced, I want to find for them an escape route.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Thinking #Mad #Wife

  • People are more concerned about the economy then these ridiculous concerns as to gender inequity in society, as manifested in marriages, in the mental health system, and then in literature.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #People #Literature #Ridiculous

  • My rage and sense of alienation as to how women have been written, have allowed themselves to be written, in so many ways, has political roots.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Roots #Political #Way

  • It is only through having a stable loving partnership that I began to feel in control enough to attempt a strict writing discipline, to realize something I always knew was simmering underneath.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Writing #Discipline #Realizing

  • I hope what I do when I draw from other people's lives is pay tribute. To try to understand what it means in our society to be silenced. To try to understand how class and gender intersect with that. To try to understand how being named and classified within the context of psychiatry can intersect with all that, as well.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Mean #Class #People

  • I am curious to see what books will emerge from all this writing online that's the result of those who grew up pouring their feelings out on Livejournal or Tumblr - excessive, sometimes automatic, sometimes enraged, emotional, while also quite intellectual - or if formal books will emerge at all, if that's not the point of these unmediated raw spaces. I'm excited by the possibility.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Book #Writing #Emotional

  • For years I lived rather medicated and muted - I did not possess language to describe my vague feelings of unhappiness, to politicize it, to attempt to transcend it.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Years #Feelings #Language

  • I always remember my childhood as traumatic, for various reasons; I always felt alienated, outside.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Childhood #Remember #Reason

  • I think the online space can be a free space, in that we are not reliant online on the publishing industry or readers who just don't get it.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Thinking #Space #Online

  • With fiction, the works of women are often over-interpreted as autobiography, especially when the main character is a woman, especially if she is seen as privileged.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Character #Fiction #Autobiography

  • The nonfiction novel or literary memoir as authored by women is usually given a much harder time in mainstream criticism.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Criticism #Nonfiction #Mainstream

  • One of my moments of coming to writing, of needing to write to attempt to create myself, to attempt to absolve and understand my past passivity, came when a girl I loved very much, who I had been estranged from for some time, killed herself.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Girl #Writing #Past

  • The memoir by women, read by female readers, is considered a market form, not "great literature."
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Female #Literature #Form

  • I have almost never been compared to male writers in any review. All women.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Males #Reviews

  • I do teach fiction and non-fiction, and usually I'm interested in works that confuse genre, but I'm very new to teaching creative writing, I don't have an MFA, or a PhD, I tend to approach it just through my own practice.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Teaching #Writing #Practice

  • The biographies of the great men see their excesses as signs of their greatness.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Greatness #Men #Excess

  • How difficult it was for a woman, once she was named by doctors, to become a writer, because many aspects of her behavior that are accepted in the genius or creative man are regarded as dangerous in the woman.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Men #Doctors #Creative

  • I think genius can have a lot to do with nerve. And permission.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Thinking #Nerves #Genius

  • Patriarchy is having the power to name.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Names #Patriarchy

  • The concept of "girl-on-girl crime" is perplexing to me, and it happens in many ways. There are those, who refuse to identify with women as a group, preferring the shade of the mythologized men, who want to keep up the status quo.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Girl #Men #Groups

  • When I get too worked up about things I have always escaped into catatonia.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #

  • I don't think men experience the embargo on channeling the autobiography in their literature.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Men #Thinking #Literature

  • She smoked because she craved something to do with her hands, that delicate interplay of light and cup and first inhale. Craved the repetition of it. It was so difficult sometimes to be still in a room, alone with oneself. To bare oneself to the lonely.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Lonely #Light #Hands

  • I think so often, especially if the work is perceived of as being drawn from life, the woman, not her book, is reviewed.
    -- Kate Zambreno

    #Book #Thinking #Ifs