Happy Birthday, Carlos Ruiz Zafón, born 25 September 1964
On Why He Writes:
As I said, I am in the business of storytelling. This is an art, a craft and a business, and I thank the Gods of Literature for that. I believe that when you pick up something I’ve written and pay for it, both in terms of your money and something much more valuable, your time, you are entitled to get the best I can produce. I believe this is not a hobby, it is a profession. If you’re pretentious enough to believe that what you write might be worth other people’s time (as I am), you should work hard enough to earn that privilege (as I do). Which brings me back to the question of why I write. Sometimes people ask me what piece of advice I would give to an aspiring author. I’d tell them that you should only become a writer if the possibility of not becoming one would kill you. Otherwise, you’d be better off doing something else. I became a writer, a teller of tales, because otherwise I would have died, or worse.
The Top 10 Ruiz Zafón Quotes About Books
- Every book, every volume you see here, has a soul. The soul of the person who wrote it and of those who read it and lived and dreamed with it. Every time a book changes hands, every time someone runs his eyes down its pages, its spirit grows and strengthens.
- Few things leave a deeper mark on the reader, than the first book that finds its way to his heart.
- I was raised among books, making invisible friends in pages that seemed cast from dust and whose smell I carry on my hands to this day.
- In the shop we buy and sell them, but in truth books have no owner. Every book you see here has been somebody’s best friend.
- I stepped into the bookshop and breathed in that perfume of paper and magic that strangely no one had ever thought of bottling.
- I had never known the pleasure of reading, of exploring the recesses of the soul, of letting myself be carried away by imagination, beauty, and the mystery of fiction and language. For me all those things were born with that novel.
- Bea says that the art of reading is slowly dying, that it’s an intimate ritual, that a book is a mirror that offers us only what we already carry inside us, that when we read, we do it with all our heart and mind, and great readers are becoming more scarce by the day.
- There are worse things than a prison of words.
- That book taught me that by reading, I could live more intensely. It could give me back the sight I had lost. For that reason alone, a book that didn’t matter to anyone changed my life.
- I leafed through the pages, inhaling the enchanted scent of promise that comes with all new books, and stopped to read the start of a sentence that caught my eye.
Carlos Ruiz Zafón is a Spanish author of six novels, including the international phenomenon The Shadow of the Wind. He is the most successful contemporary Spanish writer, along with Javier Sierra, whose works have been published in 42 countries, and Juan Gómez-Jurado, whose works have been published in 41 countries.
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