8 Brutally Honest Harlan Ellison Quotes

These punchy words of wisdom by the award-winning science fiction writer are as insightful as they are witty.

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  • Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

“The two most common elements in the universe are Hydrogen and stupidity.” 

“I don't know how you perceive my mission as a writer, but for me it is not a responsibility to reaffirm your concretized myths and provincial prejudices [...] I stir the soup. I inconvenience you. I make your nose run and your eyeballs water.”

“There are certain injustices in this life you’ve got to do something about. You can’t just say that you can’t fight it, or it’s too much trouble, or that you don’t have the time or the effort, or that you can’t win. Forget all that. Fight them all!”

“If you put your hand in my pocket, you'll drag back six inches of bloody stump."

“I think love and sex are separate and only vaguely similar. Like the word bear and the word bare. You can get in trouble mistaking one for the other.” 

"I know that pain is the most important thing in the universes. Greater than survival, greater than love, greater even than the beauty it brings about. For without pain, there can be no pleasure."

“Writing is the hardest work in the world. I have been a bricklayer and a truck driver, and I tell you–as if you haven't been told a million times already–that writing is harder. Lonelier. And nobler and more enriching. ” 

“A man may truly live in his dreams, his noblest dreams, but only, only if he is worthy of those dreams.”