The Human Heart in Conflict with Itself

William Faulkner "The young man or woman writing today has forgotten the problems of the human heart in conflict with itself which alone can make good writing because only that is worth writing about, worth the agony and the sweat. He must learn them again. He must teach himself that the basest of all things is to be afraid; and, teaching himself that, forget it forever, leaving no room in his workshop for anything but the old verities and truths of the heart, the universal truths lacking which any story is ephemeral and doomed — love and honor and pity and pride and compassion and sacrifice."

~ William Faulkner, from his acceptance speech for winning the Nobel Prize in literature on this day in 1950. Read about the gritty back-story details leading up to this speech at The Writer’s Almanac.