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Jack London

Geburtstag: 12. Januar 1876
Todesdatum: 22. November 1916

Jack London war ein US-amerikanischer Schriftsteller und Journalist. Er erlangte vor allem Bekanntheit durch seine Abenteuerromane Ruf der Wildnis und Wolfsblut sowie durch den mehrfach verfilmten Abenteuerroman Der Seewolf und den autobiographisch beeinflussten Roman Martin Eden. Diese Werke geben gleichzeitig eine Übersicht über die geographischen Räume, die er kannte: den arktischen Norden Nordamerikas zur Zeit des Goldrausches, Kalifornien und den Pazifik bzw. die Seefahrt auf diesem Ozean. Als erfolgreicher Schriftsteller bekannte London sich in seinen politischen Essays, geprägt durch harte Erfahrungen in der Kindheit, häufig zu den unteren Schichten der Gesellschaft und offen zum Sozialismus, wenn auch sehr eigener Prägung. Er war bis kurz vor seinem Tod Mitglied der Socialist Party der Vereinigten Staaten und bewarb sich 1901 für diese Partei erfolglos um das Amt des Bürgermeisters von Oakland. Sein literarisches Werk wurde international erfolgreich und in zahlreiche Sprachen übersetzt. Zu seinen Lebzeiten war London der erfolgreichste Autor der Welt.

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Jack London

Zitate Jack London

„Don't loaf and invite inspiration; light out after it with a club.“

—  Jack London

"Getting into Print", first published in 1903 in The Editor magazine
Variante: You can't wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.
Kontext: Don't loaf and invite inspiration; light out after it with a club, and if you don't get it you will nonetheless get something that looks remarkably like it.
Kontext: Fiction pays best of all and when it is of fair quality is more easily sold. A good joke will sell quicker than a good poem, and, measured in sweat and blood, will bring better remuneration. Avoid the unhappy ending, the harsh, the brutal, the tragic, the horrible - if you care to see in print things you write. (In this connection don't do as I do, but do as I say.) Humour is the hardest to write, easiest to sell, and best rewarded... Don't write too much. Concentrate your sweat on one story, rather than dissipate it over a dozen. Don't loaf and invite inspiration; light out after it with a club, and if you don't get it you will nonetheless get something that looks remarkably like it.

„A bone to the dog is not charity. Charity is the bone shared with the dog when you are just as hungry as the dog.“

—  Jack London

"Confession" in Complete Works of Jack London, Delphi Classics, 2013
Variante: Charity is the bone shared with the dog, when you are just as hungry as the dog.

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„I would rather be a superb meteor, every atom of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and permanent planet.“

—  Jack London

The Bulletin, San Francisco, California, December 2, 1916, part 2, p. 1.
Also included in Jack London’s Tales of Adventure, ed. Irving Shepard, Introduction, p. vii (1956)
Kontext: I would rather be ashes than dust! I would rather that my spark should burn out in a brilliant blaze than it should be stifled by dry-rot. I would rather be a superb meteor, every atom of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and permanent planet. The proper function of man is to live, not to exist. I shall not waste my days in trying to prolong them. I shall use my time.

„Life is not always a matter of holding good cards, but sometimes, playing a poor hand well.“

—  Jack London

As quoted in Sacred Journey of the Peaceful Warrior (1991) by Dan Millman, p. 78
Life’s not a matter of holding good cards, but sometimes playing a poor hand well.
As quoted in "They Came to Write in Hawai‘i" by Joseph Theroux, in Spirit of Aloha (March/April 2007)

„Her own limits were the limits of her horizon; but limited minds can recognize limitations only in others. And so she felt that her outlook was very wide indeed, and that where his conflicted with hers marked his limitations; and she dreamed of helping him to see as she saw, of widening his horizon until it was identified with hers.“

—  Jack London, Martin Eden

Quelle: Martin Eden (1909), Ch. VIII
Kontext: It was just such uniqueness of points of view that startled Ruth. Not only were they new to her, and contrary to her own beliefs, but she always felt in them germs of truth that threatened to unseat or modify her own convictions. Had she been fourteen instead of twenty-four, she might have been changed by them; but she was twenty-four, conservative by nature and upbringing, and already crystallized into the cranny of life where she had been born and formed. It was true, his bizarre judgments troubled her in the moments they were uttered, but she ascribed them to his novelty of type and strangeness of living, and they were soon forgotten. Nevertheless, while she disapproved of them, the strength of their utterance, and the flashing of eyes and earnestness of face that accompanied them, always thrilled her and drew her toward him. She would never have guessed that this man who had come from beyond her horizon, was, in such moments, flashing on beyond her horizon with wider and deeper concepts. Her own limits were the limits of her horizon; but limited minds can recognize limitations only in others. And so she felt that her outlook was very wide indeed, and that where his conflicted with hers marked his limitations; and she dreamed of helping him to see as she saw, of widening his horizon until it was identified with hers.

„A good joke will sell quicker than a good poem, and, measured in sweat and blood, will bring better remuneration.“

—  Jack London

"Getting into Print", first published in 1903 in The Editor magazine
Kontext: Fiction pays best of all and when it is of fair quality is more easily sold. A good joke will sell quicker than a good poem, and, measured in sweat and blood, will bring better remuneration. Avoid the unhappy ending, the harsh, the brutal, the tragic, the horrible - if you care to see in print things you write. (In this connection don't do as I do, but do as I say.) Humour is the hardest to write, easiest to sell, and best rewarded... Don't write too much. Concentrate your sweat on one story, rather than dissipate it over a dozen. Don't loaf and invite inspiration; light out after it with a club, and if you don't get it you will nonetheless get something that looks remarkably like it.

„Show me a man with a tattoo and I'll show you a man with an interesting past.“

—  Jack London

Variante: Show me a man with a tattoo and I'll show you a man with an interesting past.

„Intelligent men are cruel. Stupid men are monstrously cruel.“

—  Jack London, buch The Star Rover

The Star Rover
Variante: Intelligent men are cruel. Stupid men are monstrously cruel

„Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam egestas wisi a erat. Morbi imperdiet, mauris ac auctor dictum.“

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