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Suzan Hamer
Fussy editing for fussy people.

Netherlands
Local time: 05:33 CEST (GMT+2)

Native in: English (Variant: US) 
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Jump to a bunch of interesting links (but don't forget
to come back to read a lot of my favorite quotes).






"It is never too late--in fiction or in life--to revise."
(Nancy Thayer)



"It is never too late to be what you might have been."
(George Eliot)



"I always wanted to be somebody, but I should have been more specific."
(Lily Tomlin)



“My one regret in life is that I am not someone else.”
(Woody Allen)




“Wanting to be someone else is a waste of the person you are.”
(Kurt Cobain)



"I wish I were what I was when I wished I were what I am."
(Unknown)



"In order to become myself I must cease to be what I always thought I wanted to be."
(Thomas Merton, American writerTrappist monk and mystic; 1915-1968)



"We must be willing to get rid of the life we've planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us."
(Joseph Campbell)



"At bottom, every man knows perfectly well that he is a unique being,
only once on this earth; and by no extraordinary chance
will such a marvelously picturesque piece of diversity in unity as he is,
ever be put together a second time."
(Friedrich Nietzsche, philosopher; 1844-1900)



"Always remember that you are absolutely unique.
Just like everyone else."
(Margaret Mead)



"We are all of us stars and we all deserve to twinkle."
(Marilyn Monroe)



"To be is to do."
(Socrates)



"To do is to be."
(Jean-Paul Sartre)



"Do be do be do."
(Frank Sinatra)

[Last 3 quoted by Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. in Deadeye Dick, 1983]



"Perfection, then, is finally achieved, not when there is nothing
left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away."
(Antoine De Saint-Exupery, 1900-1944)



"Omit needless words."
(Strunk & White, The Elements of Style)



"The present letter is a very long one, simply because I had no leisure to make it shorter."
(Blaise Pascal)



“I didn't have time to write a short letter, so I wrote a long one instead.”
(Mark Twain)



"The most valuable talent is that of not using two words when one will do."
(Thomas Jefferson)



"Be obscure clearly."
(E.B. White, American writer; 1899-1985)



"What appears to be a sloppy or meaningless use of words may well be a
completely correct use of words to convey sloppy or meaningless ideas."
(Anonymous diplomat, quoted by Sir Ernest Gowers in "The Complete Plain Words"



"If language is not correct then what is said is not what is meant; if what is said
is not what is meant, then what ought to be done remains undone."
(Confucius)



"The great enemy of clear language is insincerity."
(George Orwell, 1903-1950)



"To me a subordinate clause will for ever be (since I heard the
actor Martin Jarvis describe it thus) one of Santa's little helpers."
(Lynn Truss in Eats, Shoots and Leaves)



"A metaphor is like a simile."
(Author unknown)



"A synonym is a word you use when you can't spell the other one."
(Baltasar Gracián)



"Words are like money; there is nothing so useless, unless when in actual use."
(Samuel Butler, writer; 1835-1902)



"A writer is somebody for whom writing is
more difficult than it is for other people."
(Thomas Mann, German writer; 1875-1955)



"I do not like to write. I like to have written."
(Gloria Steinem, American feminist, journalist, and social and political activist; b. 1934)



"Write drunk. Edit sober."
(Ernest Hemingway, American writer; 1899-1961)


"Do not put statements in the negative form.
And don't start sentences with a conjunction.
If you reread your work, you will find on rereading that a
great deal of repetition can be avoided by rereading and editing.
Never use a long word when a diminutive one will do.
Unqualified superlatives are the worst of all.
De-accession euphemisms.
If any word is improper at the end of a sentence, a linking verb is.
Avoid trendy locutions that sound flaky.
Last, but not least, avoid cliches like the plague."
(William Safire, American writer, 1929-2009, in Great Rules of Writing ")



"I won't not use no double negatives."
(Bart Simpson)



"Stability in language is synonymous with rigor mortis."
(Ernest Weekley, lexicographer; 1865-1954)



"Time changes all things: there is no reason why language
should escape this universal law."
(Ferdinand de Saussure, Swiss linguist and semiotician; 1857-1913)



"This contravenes strict grammar, but a rule 'serves no purpose if nobody obeys it.'
More broadly, 'the aim of language is to ensure that the speaker [or the writer] is understood, and
all ideas of correctness or authenticity must be subordinate to it.'"
(Kingsley Amis, English novelist, poet, critic, and teacher; 1922-1995)



"I have always imagined that paradise will be a kind of library."
(Jorge Luis Borges, Argentine short-story writer, essayist, poet and translator; 1899-1986)



"If I had no other book than only the book which I am
myself so I have books enough."
(Jacob Boehme, German Christian mystic and theologian; 1575-1624)



"Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body."
(Joseph Addison, English essayist, poet, playwright, and politician; 1672-1719)



"People say that life is the thing, but I prefer reading."
(Logan Pearsall Smith, American-born essayist and critic who became a British subject in 1913; 1865-1946)



"Read in order to live."
(Gustave Flaubert, French writer, 1821-1880)



"I would sooner read a timetable or a catalog than nothing at all."
(W. Somerset Maugham)



"A man is known by the company his mind keeps."
(Thomas Baily Aldrich, American poet, novelist, travel writer and editor; 1836-1907)



"These are not books, lumps of lifeless paper, but minds alive
on the shelves."
(Gilbert Highet, Scottish-American classicist, academic, writer, intellectual, critic and literary historian; 1906-1978)



"When you re-read a classic, you do not see more in the book than you did before; you see more in yourself than there was before."
(Clifton Fadiman, American editor and critic;1904-1999 )



"Since we are destined to live out our lives in the prison of our minds,
our one duty is to furnish it well."
(Peter Ustinov, English actor, writer and dramatist; 1921-2004)



"If a cluttered desk is the sign of a cluttered mind, what, then, is an empty desk?"
(Albert Einstein)



"I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him."
(Galileo Galilei, physicist and astronomer; 1564-1642)



"To have another language is to possess a second soul."
(Charlemagne)



"Translation may be impossible, but this does not make it the less necessary."
(Goethe)



"The original is unfaithful to the translation."
(Jorge Luis Borges)



"Translation is like a woman. If it is beautiful, it is not faithful.
If it is faithful, it is most certainly not beautiful."
(Yevgeny Yevtushenko)



"Woe to the makers of literal translations, who by rendering
every word weaken the meaning! It is indeed by so doing
that we can say the letter kills and the spirit gives life."
(Voltaire)



"If I am selling to you, I speak your language. If I am buying, dan mussen sie deutsch sprechen."
(Willy Brandt, former German Chancellor)



"A customer is the most important visitor on our premises.
He is not dependent on us. We are dependent on him.
He is not an interruption in our work. He is the purpose of it.
He is not an outsider in our business. He is part of it.
We are not doing him a favor by serving him.
He is doing us a favor by giving us an opportunity to do so."
(Mahatma Gandhi)



"Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored."
(Aldous Huxley, 1894-1963, British writer)



"No amount of belief makes something a fact."
(James Randi, magician and skeptic, b. 1928 )



"It isn't what you know that counts. It's what you think of in time."
(Unknown)



"No, no, you're not thinking, you're just being logical."
Niels Bohr, physicist, 1885-1962)



"Much work remains to be done before we can
announce our total failure to make any progress."
(Unknown)



"Never mistake motion for action."
(Ernest Hemingway)



"A man is not idle because he is absorbed in thought. There is a visible labor and there is an invisible labor.
(Victor Hugo, novelist and dramatist; 1802-1885)



"All men’s miseries derive from not being able to sit in a quiet room alone."
(Blaise Pascal, mathematician, physicist, inventor, writer and Christian philosopher; 1623-1662 )



"I am fundamentally a religious man without a religion.
I believe in the existence of a supreme intelligence. Call it God if you wish."
(Henry Miller, 1891-1980)



"I believe in God, only I spell it Nature."
(Frank Lloyd Wright, architect, 1867-1959)



"The world is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion."
(Thomas Paine, political activist, philosopher, author, political theorist and revolutionary; 1737-1809)



"My religion is to live—and die—without regret."
(Milarepa, Tibetan yogi, sage, and poet, c. 1052-c. 1135 CE)



"My religion is compassion."
(The Dalai Lama)



"God has no religion."
(Mahatma Gandhi)



"If there is a God, I don't think He would demand that anyone bow down or stand up to Him."
(Rebecca West, author and journalist, 1892-1983)



"Religion is the most malevolent of all mind viruses.
(Arthur C. Clarke)



"Properly read, the Bible is the most potent force for atheism ever conceived."
(Isaac Asimov, American author and professor of biochemistry, 1920-1992 )



"I am an atheist still, thank God."
(Luis Bunuel, 1900-1983, Spanish film director)



"All thinking men are atheists."
(Ernest Hemingway )



"Every day people are straying away from the church
and going back to God."
(Lenny Bruce, US comedian; 1925-1966)



"If you talk to God, you are praying. If God talks to you, you have schizophrenia."
(Thomas Szasz, author, professor of psychiatry, b. 1920)



"I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with
sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use."
(Galileo Galilei, 1564-1642)



"Are you a God?" they asked the Buddha.
"No," he replied.
"Are you an angel, then?"
"No."
"A saint?"
"No."
"Then what are you?"
Replied the Buddha, "I am awake."



"It is your mind that creates this world."
(The Buddha)



"I learned courage from Buddha, Jesus, Lincoln, Einstein and Cary Grant."
(Peggy Lee, quoted in "Slouching Toward Bethlehem," by Joan Didion)



"How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives."
(Annie Dillard, American writer; 1945)



“Be the change that you wish to see in the world.”
(Mahatma Gandhi)



"Although the connections are not always obvious, personal change is
inseparable from social and political change."
(Harriet Lerner, psychologist)‏



"Beware of enterprises requiring new clothes."
(Henry David Thoreau)



"Nobody gets a program for the concert of life."
(Dutch saying)



"Life is not a dress rehearsal."
(Unknown)



"The unexamined life is not worth living."
(Plato)



"The examined life is painful."
(Malcolm X)



"What is life? It is the flash of a firefly in the night. It is the breath of a buffalo in the wintertime.
It is the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset."
(Crowfoot, Native American warrior and orator, 1821-1890)



"Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans."
(Attributed to John Lennon, 1940-1980, but apparently first used by Allen
Saunders, American writer, journalist and cartoonist; 1899-1986)



"Life is not a spectacle or a feast; it is a predicament."
(George Santayana, 1863-1953)



"Life, as it is called, is for most of us one long postponement."
(Henry Miller)



"Life is too short to do anything for oneself that one can pay others to do for one."
(Somesert Maugham, 1874-1965; British writer)



"Life's too short for chess."
(Henry James Byron, 1834-1884)



"Life is too short to stuff mushrooms."
(Shirley Conran, British writer; b. 1932)



"Life is too short to learn German."
(Richard Porson, 1759-1808, British classicist)



["Whenever the literary German dives into a sentence, that is the last you are going to
see of him till he emerges on the other side of his Atlantic with his verb in his mouth." (Mark Twain)



"Life's too short for ironing."
(Me)



"Life is one long process of getting tired."
(Samuel Butler, 1835-1902)



"Life is a dusty corridor, I say, shut at both ends."
(Roy Campbell, 1901-1957, South African poet)



"Life is an incurable disease."
(Abraham Cowley, 1618-1667, English poet)



"Life is a foreign language: all men mispronounce it."
(Christopher Morley, 1890-1957, US writer)



"Life is a jest; and all things show it. I thought so once; but now I know it."
(John Gay, 1685-1732, British poet & dramatist)



"Life is like a sewer. What you get out of it depends on what you put in."
(Tom Lehrer, US songwriter; b. 1928)



"Life is as tedious as a twice-told tale, vexing the dull ear of a drowsy man."
(William Shakespeare)



"Life is just one damned thing after another."
(Elbert Hubbard, 1856-1915, US writer)



"It's not true that life is one damn thing after another; it is one damn thing
over and over."
(Edna St. Vincent Millay)



"Life is rather like a tin of sardines -- we're all of us looking for the key."
(Alan Bennet, 1867-1931, British dramatist)



"The life of man, solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short."
(Thomas Hobbes, 1588-1679, English philosopher)



"Life is a vicious circle."
(Overheard)



"Life is the primary cause of death."
(Anonymous)



"In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life:
It goes on."
(Robert Frost)



"The proper response to life is applause."
(William Carlos Williams)



"To fear death, gentlemen, is nothing other than to think oneself wise
when one is not; for it is to think one knows what one does not know.
No man knows whether death may not even turn out to be the
greatest of blessings for a human being; and yet people fear it as if
they knew for certain that it is the greatest of evils."
(Socrates, c. 469-399 BC)



"Perhaps the best cure for the fear of death is to reflect that life has a beginning as well as an end.
There was a time when you were not: that gives us no concern.
Why then should it trouble us that a time will come when we shall cease to be?
To die is only to be as we were before we were born.
(William Hazlitt, essayist; 1778-1830)



"I'm not afraid of death, but I'm in no hurry to die."
(Stephen Hawking)



If you had three wishes, what would they be?
"1. Not to survive my intelligence; in other words, to be able to write effectively
and thoughtfully for as long as I live—however long that may be.
2. To cause no sorrow when I leave this life; in other words, to have all those
who both love me and survive me to be so glad that I have lived
effectively and happily that they will feel no need to mourn.
3. And most of all—to live long enough to see humanity make the crucial decisions
for survival; in other words, to die knowing that civilization will survive after all
into the 21st century, and for as long thereafter as is possible."
(Isaac Asimov)



"Hell is other people."
(Jean-Paul Sartre, 1905-1980)



"Humans think they are smarter than dolphins because we build cars and buildings and
start wars, etc., and all that dolphins do is swim in the water, eat fish and play around.
Dolphins believe that they are smarter for exactly the same reasons."
(Douglas Adams, writer, dramatist, and musician; 1952-2001)



"Animals have these advantages over man: they never hear the clock strike,
they die without any idea of death, they have no theologians to instruct them,
their last moments are not disturbed by unwelcome and unpleasant ceremonies,
their funerals cost them nothing, and no one starts lawsuits over their wills."
(Voltaire, philosopher and writer, 1694-1778)



"I like pigs. Dogs look up to us. Cats look down on us. Pigs treat us as equals."
(Sir Winston Churchill)




"The hunter in pursuit of an elephant does not stop to throw stones at birds."
(Ugandan proverb)



"When you come to a fork in the road, take it."
(Yogi Berra)



"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves,
and wiser people so full of doubts."
(Bertrand Russell, 1872 - 1970)



Moral certainty is always a sign of cultural inferiority. The more uncivilized the man, the surer he is
that he knows precisely what is right and what is wrong. All human progress, even in morals, has been the work of men who
have doubted the current moral values, not of men who have whooped them up and tried to enforce them.
The truly civilized man is always skeptical and tolerant, in this field as in all others. His culture is based
on "I am not too sure."
(H.L. Mencken, writer, editor, and critic, 1880-1956)



"Common sense is not so common."
(Voltaire)



"Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity."
(Hanlon's Razor)



"Never cut what you can untie."
(Joseph Joubert, essayist, 1754-1824)



Hofstadter's Law: It always takes longer than you expect, even when you take into account Hofstadter's Law.
(Douglas Hofstadter, Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid )



Murphy's Law: Anything that can go wrong will go wrong.
(Ascribed to Edward A. Murphy, Jr.)



Muphry's Law: If you write anything criticizing editing or proofreading, there will be a fault of some kind in what you have written.
(John Bangsund)



Skitt's law I: Any post correcting an error in another post will contain at least one error itself.



Skitt's law II: The likelihood of an error in a post is directly proportional to the embarrassment it will cause the poster.



Sturgeon's Law: Nothing is always absolutely so.



Sturgeon's revelation: 90 percent of everything is crud.



Wiltshire's Law of Explanation: To define is to limit.



"The trouble with being punctual is that nobody's there to appreciate it."
(Franklin P. Jones)



"Perscriptio in manibus tabellariorum est." (The check is in the mail.)



"Conscience is the inner voice that warns us somebody may be looking."
(Henry Louis Mencken, US journalist; 1880-1956)



"It is the process [of creativity] that motivates every human activity.... If you know it incredibly well you
write Beethoven's Ninth Symphony. If you refuse to even consider it, then cocktail hour may be your
most important experience.... We were Created to Participate."
(Keith Jarrett, musician)



"Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful,
or believe to be beautiful."
(William Morris)



"Reject the basic assumptions of civilization, especially the importance of material possessions."
(Chuck Palahniuk, Fight Club )



"How many things are there which I do not want."
(Socrates, c. 469 BC – 399 BC )



"We don’t need to increase our goods nearly as much as we need to scale down our wants.
Not wanting something is as good as possessing it."
(Donald Horban )



"Every increased possession loads us with new weariness."
(John Ruskin, author, art critic, and social reformer; 1819-1900)



"In this world it is not what we take up, but what we give up, that makes us rich."
(Henry Ward Beecher)



"He is nearest to God who needs the fewest things."
(Socrates)



"Possessions, outward success, publicity, luxury—to me these have always been
contemptible. I believe that a simple and unassuming manner of life is best for everyone,
best both for the body and the mind."
(Albert Einstein, 1879-1955)



"There is more to life than increasing its speed."
(Mohandas Gandhi)



"Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others to live as one wishes to live."
(Oscar Wilde)



"Those who danced were thought to be quite insane by those who could not hear the music."
(Angela Monet)



"What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies with in."
(Ralph Waldo Emerson)



"Do not anticipate trouble, or worry about what may never happen. Keep in the sunlight."
(Benjamin Franklin, author, printer, political theorist, politician, postmaster, scientist, inventor, civic activist, statesman, and diplomat; 1706-1790 )



"Life without music would be a mistake."
(Nietzsche)


"In the hopes of reaching the moon men fail to see the flowers that blossom at their feet."
(Albert Schweitzer)



"Happiness is like coke--something you get as a by-product in the process of making something else."
(Aldous Huxley, British writer; 1894-1963)



"Health and cheerfulness naturally beget each other."
(Joseph Addison, English essayist, poet, playwright, and politician; 1672-1719)



"Ask yourself whether you are happy, and you cease to be so."
(John Stuart Mill, British philosopher; 1806-1873)



"Agatha Christie has given more pleasure in bed than any other woman."
(Nancy Banks Smit)



"Een Hollandse roman is als een lusteloze coïtus."
(Annie M.G. Schmidt, Prisma van de citaten, blz. 252)



"If the Sun were the size of a beach ball then Jupiter would be the size of a golf ball
and the Earth would be as small as a pea. . . . If our Sun were just one inch
in diameter, the nearest star would be 445 miles away."
(Albert Einstein, 1879-1955)



"Problems cannot be solved at the same level of awareness that created them."
(Albert Einstein, 1879-1955)



“Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.”
(Albert Einstein, 1879-1955)



"Three Rules of Work:
Out of clutter find simplicity
From discord find harmony
In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity."
(Albert Einstein )



"The facts, although interesting, are irrelevant."
(Albert Einstein)



"If the facts don't fit the theory, change the facts."
(Albert Einstein)



"I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV
will be fought with sticks and stones."
(Albert Einstein)



"Once you can accept the universe as being something expanding into an infinite
nothing which is something, wearing stripes with plaid is easy."
(Albert Einstein)



"I have yet to see any problem, however complicated, which, when you
looked at it in the right way, did not become still more complicated."
(Poul Anderson)



"On two occasions I have been asked, 'Pray, Mr. Babbage, if you put into the machine wrong figures, will the
right answers come out?' I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question."
Charles Babbage, mathematician and computer scientist, 1791-1871)



"I have always wished that my computer would be as easy to use as
my telephone. My wish has come true. I no longer know how to use my telephone."
(Bjarne Stroustrup, originator of C++ programming language)



"I can't remember my telephone number, but I know it was in the high numbers."
(John Maynard Keynes, quoted in D. MacHale, Comic Sections, Dublin 1993)



"You must do what you think you cannot do."
(Eleanor Roosevelt, You Learn by Living)



"It is only the first step that is difficult."
(Marie de Vichy-Chamrond, 1763)



"I have not failed 10,000 times. I have successfully found 10,000 ways that will not work."
(Thomas A. Edison)



"The beginning of a habit is like an invisible thread, but every time
we repeat the act we strengthen the thread, add to it another
filament until it becomes a great cable and binds us irrevocably,
thought and act."
(Orison Swett Marden)



"Habit is either the best of servants or the worst of masters."
(Nathaniel Emmons)



"We are what we repeatedly do."
(Aristotle)



"Imagination is the beginning of creation. You imagine what you desire,
you will what you imagine and at last you create what you will."
(George Bernard Shaw, 1856-1950)



"The world is but canvas to our imagination."
(Henry David Thoreau, 1817-1862)



"If your ship doesn't come in, swim out to it."
(Anonymous)



"Losing one glove
is certainly painful,
but nothing
compared to the pain,
of losing one,
throwing away the other,
and finding
the first one again."
(Piet Hein, poet and scientist, 1905-1996)



"A penny saved is a penny earned."
(Benjamin Franklin)



"'A penny saved is a penny earned.' But a light left on is a penny burned."
(Benjamin Franklin and my dad, Walter Hamer, Jr.)



"Money is not required to buy one necessity of the soul."
(Henry David Thoreau)



"The tighter you squeeze, the less you have."
(Thomas Merton)



"You will find relief from vain fancies if you do every act in life as though it were your last."
(Marcus Aurelius, philosopher, writer, Roman emperor, 121-180 AD)


"Make haste slowly."
(Erasmus)



"Fear nothing except to waste the moment."
(Mark Sanborn)



"To travel is better than to arrive"
(Mark Twain)



"Travel broadens the mind but it can sure unsettle the soul."
(Unknown )



"Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever."
(Gandhi)



"Work like you don't need the money.
Dance like no one is watching.
Sing like no one is listening.
Love like you've never been hurt.
And live life every day as if it were your last."
(Irish saying)




"People are unreasonable, illogical and self-centered.
Love them anyway.
If you do good, people may accuse you of selfish motives.
Do good anyway.
If you are successful you may win false friends and true enemies.
Succeed anyway.
The good you do today may be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.
Honesty and transparency make you vulnerable.
Be honest and transparent anyway.
What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight.
Build anyway.
People who really want help may attack you if you help them.
Help them anyway.
Give the world the best you have and you may get hurt.
Give the world your best anyway."
(Mother Teresa)


"Scatter joy."
(Ralph Waldo Emerson)






LINKS
My Art Collection
Amazing and perhaps disturbing World Clock
Incredible and ALSO perhaps disturbing photographs
Astronomy picture of the day. Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our
fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.
Trash Man Walking
Incredibly Beautiful Fractals
The Cloud Appreciation Society
Handmade Paper Art



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