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Before Very Nobility

In the contemporary world, we think of politeness as surface behavior, like frosting - it's sweet and attractive and finishes off the cake. But 19th century nobility and the enlightened thinkers and stoics before them viewed manners in a very different way. To them, manners are an outward expression of an inward struggle.

- Amor Towles

Through Social Class

I prefer to put myself in an environment that's further afield and look through the eyes of someone who differs from me in age, ethnicity, gender, and/or social class. I think a little displacement makes me a sharper observer.

- Amor Towles

Want Nostalgia Admirable

Of course, you wouldn't want to re-create the era of aristocracy; it was a totally unfair era. The finer aspects of it were admirable, and so there's nostalgia for that: the behavior, the values, the cultural sensitivities.

- Amor Towles

Very Bay Area Boulevard

One restaurant I visit without fail, whenever I'm in the Bay Area, is the Boulevard at 1 Mission Street, a few strides from the waterfront. It has excellent food and wine very much in the modern California style, but I go there less for any one dish than for the pleasure of dining with the restaurant's chefs.

- Amor Towles

More About Tell

What can a first impression tell us about anyone? Why, no more than a chord can tell us about Beethoven, or a brushstroke about Botticelli.

- Amor Towles

Which Read Given

I had read Harold Bloom's 'Where Shall Wisdom Be Found?' Late in his life, having read everything, Bloom asked which books had given him wisdom. I had just read a bunch of contemporary novels that had no wisdom for me.

- Amor Towles

Having Woman Grandmother

My grandmother, who was simultaneously a woman of manners and verve, fended off marriage proposals until she was 30 because she was having too much fun to settle down.

- Amor Towles

Love Survive Russian

As awful as the crimes of Stalinism were, the vast majority of the Russian population was trying to survive, to love, to have a sense of purpose.

- Amor Towles

Been Fiction Kid

I've been writing fiction since I was a kid. From the age of 15 to 25, I probably wrote more than 50 short stories, one of which was published in 'The Paris Review' in 1989.

- Amor Towles

Which Art Been

My personal challenge as an artist has been having a day job which is intellectually satisfying and fun - and thus can easily supplant the desire to make art.

- Amor Towles

Hidden 1930s Civility

While I began writing 'Rules of Civility' in 2006, the genesis of the book dates back to the early 1990s, when I happened upon a copy of 'Many Are Called,' the collection of portraits that Walker Evans took on the New York City subways in the late 1930s with a hidden camera.

- Amor Towles

Purpose Hammered Elements

All the historical elements should feel organic to the story but not hammered down to serve a purpose.

- Amor Towles

Deserve Very Nature

By their very nature, human beings are so capricious, so complex, so delightfully contradictory, that they deserve not only our consideration but our reconsideration.

- Amor Towles

About Feet Instrument

Growing up, I didn't come from a musical family. Neither of my parents played an instrument, sang out loud, or listened to the radio with frequency. The record collection in the living room was only about 2 feet long - and that included 4 solid inches of Neil Diamond and Herb Alpert.

- Amor Towles

Came Revelation Boston

To a bookish boy in a Boston suburb in the mid-1970s, the lyrics of Cole Porter came as something of a revelation.

- Amor Towles

Imagined Dad Boston

Dad has worked as a banker at the same firm in Boston, living in the same suburban neighborhood for over 50 years. Later in life, when I got out of graduate school and imagined myself living the life of a writer like Hemingway or Kerouac, his practical self inevitably encouraged me to get a steady a job and raise a family, just like he did.

- Amor Towles

Always Thought Inside

I always thought I was a writer on the inside, but after a few years of not writing, you can't make that claim anymore.

- Amor Towles

Being Minutes 60 Minutes

I totally remember that: being 25 and unemployed and trying to stretch each cappuccino for 60 minutes.

- Amor Towles

Think Some I Think

I think that, every individual you invent in narrative work, you have to have some root in who that person is. That may be an aspect of yourself; it may be an aspect of something that you like, that you don't like. It may be an aspect that you wish you had. Maybe something you admire in another person.

- Amor Towles

Study Aspects Russian

We study, as Americans, the extreme aspects of repression under the Stalinist era. We're focused on them. The vast majority of Russian citizens, it was a much softer type of being disconcerted.

- Amor Towles

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Always Weekend Loved

I've always loved the 'Weekend Update' people.

- Chevy Chase

Use Entertainment Weekend

Users socialize to figure out what they're going to do on the weekend. They use MySpace to discover new music and post events. Musicians upload their music. People use it for entertainment purposes or to sell goods in the classified area. MySpace makes what they do in the offline world a) more efficient or b) more interesting.

- Chris DeWolfe

Like Will Weekend

I do like to just have football on, so I will TiVo, like, three or four games for the weekend, and I'll just turn it on when there's no live football on, just to have the background noise.

- Christopher Gorham

Honor Country Weekend

Armed Forces Day on May 21, and the Memorial Day weekend that follows, is a time to honor, remember and recognize those who serve and have served our country, as well as those who have died in service. As we reflect, let's not forget the many sacrifices made at home as well in support of our men and women in uniform.

- Chuck Norris

Weekend Diner Trails

Now that I have a 16-month-old son, my weekend ritual has changed - but it's better than ever. We get up early and go for a walk on one of the hiking trails near my home in Los Angeles, then meet up with friends at a diner. There's nothing better than sipping coffee, eating scrambled eggs, and taking three hours to do it.

- Connie Britton

Mum Dad Weekend

I was really into old musicals. When I was seven or eight, my mum and dad would be like, 'How does she know who Ginger Rogers is?' Then, one weekend, Josephine Baker popped up in a French film called 'Zouzou,' and I was so stunned because she looked like me.

- Cush Jumbo

Been Week Weekend

I am still feeling my calf strain, so I have been unable to train this week. I will again have to sit out the weekend action, but the lads are climbing ever higher to safety.

- David Ginola

About Life Professionally

It's not okay to just make up false things about someone, especially in their personal life. Professionally, fine! Scrutinize me all you want. I know that I can't please everyone, but personally, let's just leave it alone. It's going too far.

- Keri Hilson

Just Lovely Professionally

Actresses are just professionally lovely, aren't they?

- Tom Hollander

Began Naive Professionally

I was so naive when I began acting, professionally.

- Alanna Ubach

Maybe Ben Professionally

My first job was playing 'Nurse 2' in a film by Ben Elton called 'Maybe Baby,' and the first actors I worked with professionally were Hugh Laurie and Joely Richardson. I was totally star-struck. I got that job on my final day of drama school, so it was a nice bridge into the professional world.

- Shelley Conn

Small Icon Professionally

The Bible app is designed to make absorbing the Word as frictionless as possible. For example, to make the Bible app habit easier to adopt, a user who prefers to not read at all can simply tap a small icon, which plays a professionally produced audio track, read with all the dramatic bravado of Charlton Heston himself.

- Nir Eyal

Sing Crave Professionally

I can sing, but it isn't something I crave to do professionally.

- Sophie Kennedy Clark

College Got Professionally

After high school, I went to VCU and got a B.F.A. in theater. I got to do a bunch of stuff professionally throughout college. I actually got my SAG card in college.

- Zachary Knighton