Neil Simon is 89 years old today. His best quotes:

Read the best quotes of the iconic playwright and screenwriter Neil Simon. 

If you can go through life without experiencing pain you probably haven’t been born yet.

Talent is the gift plus the passion – a desire to succeed so intense that no force on earth can stop it.

Once you start compromising your thoughts, you’re a candidate for mediocrity.

I much prefer writing an original movie with the screen in mind to transferring a play to the screen.

I love living. I have some problems with my life, but living is the best thing they’ve come up with so far.
I firmly believe that if you follow a path that interests you, not to the exclusion of love, sensitivity, and cooperation with others, but with the strength of conviction that you can move others by your own efforts, and do not make success or failure the criteria by which you live, the chances are you’ll be a person worthy of your own respects.

Writing is an escape from a world that crowds me. I like being alone in a room. It’s almost a form of meditation- an investigation of my own life.

It’s always painful when you’re writing memoirs because you’ve got to go through the dark places, but it gives you a chance to find out the person you really are, not the person you thought you were.

Take care of him. And make him feel important. And if you can do that, you’ll have a happy and wonderful marriage. Like two out of every ten couples.

The first book was my first attempt at writing full-length prose.

Don’t listen to those who say, you taking too big a chance. Michelangelo would have painted the Sistine floor, and it would surely be rubbed out by today.

Writers feel like a middleman, standing with pen in hand over the page. A force greater than me stands above telling me what to write. That may sound romantic, but that’s how it feels.

When its 100 degrees in New York, it’s 72 in Los Angeles. When its 30 degrees in New York, in Los Angeles it’s still 72. However, there are 6 million interesting people in New York, and only 72 in Los Angeles.

Never underestimate the stimulation of eccentricity.

If no one ever took risks, Michaelangelo would have painted the Sistine floor.

I don’t use computers… I’m someone who needs to see the page right away in my hand.

Once you’ve opened yourself up, it’s best to go all the way.

I got brown sandwiches and green sandwiches. Its either very new cheese or very old meat. – Oscar Madison, from The Odd Couple

Everyone thinks they can write a play; you just write down what happened to you. But the art of it is drawing from all the moments of your life.

You get attached to the way you write, and I’m attached to notebooks. That’s where I really write the plays. Just two or three pages at a time, then I transfer to the typewriter and rewrite while I type.

I don’t like writing for comedians. I like writing for actors. The best comedians are the best actors.

Gee, what a terrific party. Later on we’ll get some fluid and embalm each other.

He’s too nervous to kill himself. He wears his seat belt in a drive-in movie.

All humor is based on hostility – that’s why World War Two was funny.

Rewriting is when writing really gets to be fun. . . . In baseball you only get three swings and you’re out. In rewriting, you get almost as many swings as you want and you know, sooner or later, you’ll hit the ball.

By WILDsound Festival

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