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I don’t have any style.
– Guillermo Cabrera Infante
Puns are a form of humor with words.
Well, I write in exile because I cannot return to my country, so I have no choice but to see myself as an exiled writer.
If you look closely, there is no book more visual than Three Trapped Tigers, in that it is filled with blank pages, dark pages, it has stars made of words, the famous magical cube made of numbers, and there is even a page which is a mirror.
You are just in the middle of a struggle with words which are really very stubborn things, with a blank page, with the damn thing that you use to write with, a pen or a typewriter, and you forget all about the reader when you are doing that.
Watching a movie from beginning to end is like reading, because even though what you see are images, they are telling you a story.
It means that no matter what you write, be it a biography, an autobiography, a detective novel, or a conversation on the street, it all becomes fiction as soon as you write it down.
I know that many writers have had to write under censorship and yet produced good novels; for instance, Cervantes wrote Don Quixote under Catholic censorship.
For me, literature is a complex game, both mental and concrete, which is acted out in a physical manner on the page.
I was able to read a movie before I was able to read a book.
I think that I’ve tried many times to get Cuba in my writings, especially Havana, which was once a great and fascinating city.
American literature had always considered writing a very serious matter.
I describe my works as books, but my publishers in Spain, in the United States, and elsewhere insist on calling them novels.
I think writers rush in where everybody is very frightened to tread.
I am a writer of fragments.
I read the Odyssey because it was the story of a man who returned home after being absent for more than twenty years and was recognized only by his dog.
I have one main reader, Miriam Gomez, my wife. She reads everything I write – I have not finished writing something and she is already reading it.
I think that like all writers – and if any writer disagrees with this, then he is not a writer – I write primarily for myself.
I believe that writers, unless they consider themselves terribly exquisite, are at heart people who live by night, a little bit outside society, moving between delinquency and conformity.
No, absolutely not, writing doesn’t have to be like a jigsaw puzzle, it can be a very linear undertaking.
I was an avid radio fan when I was a boy, as well as a great lover of comic strips.
I do not consider myself a Hispanic writer.
My mother had been educated at a convent, and she had been converted to communism by my father during Stalin’s most rampant period, at the beginning of the 1930s. So she had two gods, God in heaven and god on earth.
That is what I define as a novel: something that has a beginning, a middle and an end, with characters and a plot that sustain interest from the first sentence to the last. But that is not what I do at all.
I don’t much believe in the idea of characters. I write with words, that is all. Whether those words are put in the mouth of this or that character does not matter to me.
My parents were founders of the Cuban Communist Party, and I grew up extremely poor.