The mind has exactly the same power as the hands; not merely to grasp the world, but to change it.
The average man is a conformist, accepting miseries and disasters with the stoicism of a cow standing in the rain.
Being very famous is not the fun it sounds. It merely means you're being chased by a lot of people and you lose your privacy.
Whereas in the past optimism had been regarded as rather shallow - because 'oh well, it's just your temperament, you happen to be just a cheerful sort of person' - what I wanted to do was to establish that in fact it is the pessimists who are allowing all kinds of errors to creep into their work.
Criminals interest me, because they're driven by the same desires as we are, but they take these disastrous shortcuts and end up in a real mess.