Quotes of David Nicholls

“ The trick of it, she told herself, is to be courageous and bold and make a difference. Not change the world exactly, just the bit around you. Go out there with your double-first, your passion and your new Smith Corona electric typewriter and work hard at ... something. Change lives through art maybe. Write beautifully. Cherish your friends, stay true to your principles, live passionately and fully well. Experience new things. Love and be loved if at all possible. Eat sensibly. Stuff like that. ”

- David Nicholls

“ If I could give you just one gift ever for the rest of your life it would be this. Confidence. It would be the gift of confidence. Either that or a scented candle. ”

- David Nicholls

“ I think you actually get a kick out of being disappointed and under-achieving, because it's easier, isn't it? Failure and unhappiness is easier because you can make a joke out of it. ”

- David Nicholls

“ To have had fame, even very minor fame, and to have lost it, got older and maybe put on a little weight is a kind of living death. ”

- David Nicholls

“ Friends were like clothes: fine while they lasted but eventually they wore thin or you grew out of them. ”

- David Nicholls

“ These days grief seems like walking on a frozen river; most of the time he feels safe enough, but there is always that danger he will plunge through. ”

- David Nicholls

“ He wanted to live life in such a way that if a photograph were taken at random it would be a cool photograph. Things should look right. Fun; there should be a lot of fun and no more sadness than absolutely necessary. ”

- David Nicholls

“ A joke was not a single-use item but something you brought out again and again until it fell apart in your hand like a cheap umbrella. ”

- David Nicholls

“ If you're at school and you're not that bright or good-looking or popular or whatever, and one day you say something and someone laughs, well, you sort of grab onto it, don't you? you think, well I run funny and I've got this stupid big face and big thighs and no-one fancies me, but at least I can make people laugh. And It's such a nice feeling, making someone laugh, that maybe you get a bit reliant on it. Like, if you're not funny then you're not... anything. ”

- David Nicholls

“ There's something unnatural about a woman finding babies or, more specifically, conversation about babies, boring. They'll think she's bitter, jealous, lonely. But she's also bored of everybody telling her how lucky she is, what with all that sleep and all that freedom and spare time, the ability to go on dates or head off to Paris at a moments notice. It sounds like they're consoling her, and she resents this and feels patronized by it. ”

- David Nicholls

“ If you have to keep something secret it's because you shouldn't be doing it in the first place! ”

- David Nicholls

“ Envy was just the tax you paid on success. ”

- David Nicholls

“ Maybe that's just what happens; you start out wanting to change the world through language, and end up thinking it's enough to tell a few jokes. ”

- David Nicholls

“ She was discovering once again that reading and writing were not the same-you couldn't just soak it up then squeeze it out again. ”

- David Nicholls

“ Sometimes, when it's going badly, she wonders if what she believes to be a love of the written word is really just a fetish for stationary. The true writer, the born writer, will scribble words on scraps of litter, the back of a bus ticket, on the wall of a cell. ”

- David Nicholls

“ This is where it all begins. Everything starts here, today. ”

- David Nicholls

“ You're gorgeous, you old hag, and if I could give you just one gift ever for the rest of your life it would be this. Confidence. It would be the gift of confidence. Either that or a scented candle ”

- David Nicholls

“ You can live your whole life not realizing that what you're looking for is right in front of you. ”

- David Nicholls

“ Can I say something?' 'Go on' 'I'm a little drunk' 'Me too. That's okay.' 'Just....I missed you, you know.' 'I missed you too.' 'But so, so much, Dexter. There were so many things I wanted to talk to you about, and you weren't there' 'same here.' 'I tell you what it is. It's.....When I didn't see you, I thought about you every day, I mean EVERY DAY in some way or another' 'same here.' 'Even if it was just "I wish Dexter could see this" or "Where's Dexter now?" or "Christ that Dexter, what an idiot", you know what I mean, and seeing you today, well, I thought I'd got you back my BEST friend. And now all this, the wedding, the baby I'm so happy for you, Dex, but it feels like I've lost you again.' 'You know what happens you have a family, your responsibilities change, you lose touch with people' 'It won't be like that, I promise.' 'Do you?' 'Absolutely' 'You swear? No more disappearing?' 'I won't if you won't.' Their lips touched now, mouths pursed tight, their eyes open, both of them stock still. The moment held, a kind of glorious confusion. ”

- David Nicholls

“ Dexter, I love you so much. So, so much, and I probably always will. I just don't like you anymore. I'm sorry. ”

- David Nicholls

“ You can live your whole life not realizing that what you're looking for is right in front of you. ”

- David Nicholls

“ What are you going to do with your life?" In one way or another it seemed that people had been asking her this forever; teachers, her parents, friends at three in the morning, but the question had never seemed this pressing and still she was no nearer an answer... "Live each day as if it's your last', that was the conventional advice, but really, who had the energy for that? What if it rained or you felt a bit glandy? It just wasn't practical. Better by far to be good and courageous and bold and to make difference. Not change the world exactly, but the bit around you. Cherish your friends, stay true to your principles, live passionately and fully and well. Experience new things. Love and be loved, if you ever get the chance. ”

- David Nicholls

“ You know what I can't understand? You have all these people telling you all the time how great you are, smart and funny and talented and all that, I mean endlessly, I've been telling you for years. So why don't you believe it? why do you think people say that stuff, Em? Do you think it's a conspiracy, people secretly ganging up to be nice about you? ”

- David Nicholls

“ You know what I can't understand? You have all these people telling you all the time how great you are, smart and funny and talented and all that, I mean endlessly, I've been telling you for years. So why don't you believe it? why do you think people say that stuff, Em? Do you think it's a conspiracy, people secretly ganging up to be nice about you? ”

- David Nicholls

“ Call me sentimental, but there's noone in the world that I'd like to see get dysentery more than you ”

- David Nicholls

“ This is me.’" He handed her the precious scrap of paper. ‘Call me or I’ll call you, but one of us will call, yes? What I mean is it’s not a competition. You don’t lose if you phone first. ”

- David Nicholls

“ She drinks pints of coffee and writes little observations and ideas for stories with her best fountain pen on the linenwhite pages of expensive notebooks. Sometimes, when it's going badly, she wonders if what she believes to be a love of the written word is really just a fetish for stationery. ”

- David Nicholls

“ For his thirtieth birthday he had filled a whole nightclub off Regent Street; people had been queuing on the pavement to get in. The SIM card of his mobile phone in his pocket was overflowing with telephone numbers of all the hundreds of people he had met in the last ten years, and yet the only person he had ever wanted to talk to in all that time was standing now in the very next room. ”

- David Nicholls

“ No, this, she felt, was real life and if she wasn’t as curious or passionate as she had once been, that was only to be expected. It would be inappropriate, undignified, at thirtyeight, to conduct friendships or love affairs with the ardour and intensity of a twentytwoyearold. Falling in love like that? Writing poetry, crying at pop songs? Dragging people into photobooths, taking a whole day to make a compilation tape, asking people if they wanted to share your bed, just for company? If you quoted Bob Dylan or T.S. Eliot or, God forbid, Brecht at someone these days they would smile politely and step quietly backwards, and who would blame them? Ridiculous, at thirtyeight, to expect a song or book or film to change your life. No, everything had evened out and settled down and life was lived against a general background hum of comfort, satisfaction and familiarity. There would be no more of these nervejangling highs and lows. The friends they had now would be the friends they had in five, ten, twenty years’ time. They expected to get neither dramatically richer or poorer; they expected to stay healthy for a little while yet. Caught in the middle; middle class, middleaged; happy in that they were not overly happy. Finally, she loved someone and felt fairly confident that she was loved in return. If someone asked Emma, as they sometimes did at parties, how she and her husband had met, she told them: ‘We grew up together. ”

- David Nicholls

“ He could feel her laughter against his chest, and at that moment he thought that there was no better feeling than making Emma Morley laugh. ”

- David Nicholls
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