Penelope Lively on Contingency

“Life as lived is disordered, undirected, and at the mercy of contingent events.”

Penelope Lively / Ammonites and Leaping Fish: A Life in Time

Penelope Lively on Memory

“I have learned to be suspicious of memory–my own, anyone’s–but to accord it considerable respect. Whether accurate or not, it can subvert a life.”

~ Penelope LivelyAmmonites and Leaping Fish: A Life in Time

Penelope Lively on Ageing

“There’s this piece of contemporary mythology that the forties are the best time of your life. A load of cock, so far as I’m concerned.”

~ Penelope Lively / Passing On

Penelope Lively on Words

“I find this miraculous. I never cease to wonder at it. That words are more durable than anything…”

~ Penelope Lively / Moon Tiger

Penelope Lively on Life

“I think it’s only later in life that you begin to realize just how contingent life is and the extraordinary way in which one’s own life has been dependent on decisions made in one direction or another.”

~ Penelope Lively