A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life Quotes.

1. "I’ve written more about my parents than any writer in the history of the world, and I still return to their mysterious effigies as I try to figure out what it all means—some kind of annunciation or maybe even a summing-up They still exert immense control over me even though they’ve been dead for so long. But I can conjure up their images without exerting a thimbleful of effort."
- Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

2. "Few people understood the exceptional role the civil rights movement had on the white boys and girls of the South. Bill Clinton would never have become who he was without the shining example of Martin Luther King. The same is true of Jimmy Carter and Fritz Hollings and Richard and Joe Riley. Imagine this: you’re a little white kid and you watch firehoses turned on people who don’t seem to be hurting anyone, and fierce dogs being tuned on young men who carry signs about freedom. We white kids grew up watching movies and TV and guess what we had learned to do? We had learned to tell the good guys from the bad guys."
- Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

3. "Humor has always been the redemptive angel in the Conroys’s sad history. With this family, I shall never grow hungry from lack of material."
- Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

4. "If any writer in this country has collected as fine and passionate a group of readers as I have, they’re fortunate and lucky beyond anyone’s imagination. It remains a shock to me that I’ve had a successful writing career. Not someone like me; Lord, there were too many forces working against me, too many dark currents pushing against me, but it somehow worked. Though I wish I’d written a lot more, been bolder with my talent, more forgiving of my weaknesses, I’ve managed to draw a magic audience into my circle. They come to my signings to tell me stories, their stories. The ones that have hurt them and made their nights long and their lives harder."
- Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

5. "A nation of unhappy teachers makes for a sadder and more endangered America."
- Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

6. "Teaching remains a heroic act to me, and teachers live a necessary and all-important life. We are killing their spirit with unnecessary pressure and expectation that seem forced and destructive to me. Long ago I was one of them. I still regret I was forced to leave them. My entire body of work is because of men and women like them."
- Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

7. "I consider the two years in Beaufort when I taught high school as perhaps the happiest time of my life. My attraction to melodrama and suffering had not yet overwhelmed me, but signs of it were surfacing. No one had warned me that a teacher could fall so completely in love with his students that graduation seemed like the death of a small civilization."
- Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

8. "From the beginning, I’ve told journalists that I planned to write better than any writer of my era who graduated from an Ivy League college. It sounds boastful and it is. But The Citadel taught me that I was a man of courage when I survived that merciless crucible of a four-year test that is the measure of The Citadel experience. I’m the kind of writer I am because of The Citadel."
- Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

9. "I was raised in the Marine Corps and I was taught as a boy that you feed your own men before you feed yourself. It was my belief then, and it remains so today, that my platoon who loves and respect me will slaughter your platoon that hates you. But here is the great lesson I took from the plebe system—it let me know exactly the kind of man I wanted to become. It made me ache to be a contributing citizen in whatever society I found myself in, to live out a life I could be proud of, and always to measure up to what I took to be the highest ideal of a Citadel man—or, now, a Citadel woman. The standards were clear to me and they were high, and I took my marching orders from my college to take my hard-won education and go out to try to make the whole world a better place."
- Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

10. "I was a watchful boy being raised by a father I didn’t admire. In a desperate way, I needed the guidance of someone who could show me another way of becoming a man. It was sometime during the year when I decided I would become the kind of man that Bill Dufford was born to be. I wanted to be the type of man that a whole town could respect and honor and fall in love with—the way Beaufort did when Bill Dufford came to town to teach and shape and turn its children into the best citizens they could be."
- Pat Conroy, A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life

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