For almost anyone who chooses to be a writer, since so very few writers are able to learn a living from their work that is equivalent to the living earned by the average dentist or accountant.

- Russell Banks

My major allegiance has been to storytelling, not to history.

- Russell Banks

I began as a boy with artistic talent... as a visual artist... I thought that was what I'd become and in my late teens drifted into reading serious literature.

- Russell Banks

Through writing, through that process, they realize that they become more intelligent, and more honest and more imaginative than they can be in any other part of their life.

- Russell Banks

It's hard to spend years at a time working in total solitude with no reality-check.

- Russell Banks

But on the other hand, I don't actively seek out stories or hunt them down.

- Russell Banks

If you dedicate your attention to discipline in your life you become smarter while you are writing than while you are hanging out with your pals or in any other line of work.

- Russell Banks

First of all it's usually women who run these higher primate sanctuaries, rarely men. They are white. They come from privileged backgrounds. They are educated.

- Russell Banks

Lists of books we reread and books we can't finish tell more about us than about the relative worth of the books themselves.

- Russell Banks

I don't want it to be all that self-conscious or artificial, but it really grows out of my having invented myself as a listener so that I could hear her voice.

- Russell Banks