Authors: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

A collection of Pat Conroy quotes about books, writing, discipline, teacher, traveling, life, success, failure, love

100 Pat Conroy Quotes That Will Always Live In Your Memory

Quick Facts

Famous As: Writer

Born On: October 26, 1945

Died On: March 4, 2016

Born In: Atlanta, Georgia, United States

Died At Age: 70

Despite experiencing a traumatic childhood, some people overcome the bad memories of their life and take it as a source of inspiration to perform better in life. Pat Conroy, born as Donald Patrick Conroy was one such personality and inspired us with his writing. He was a renowned American author and wrote 14 novels and memoirs that were heavily inspired by his brutal childhood. He experienced difficulties with his own father, who was a sadistic fighter plane pilot. His father hit his mother and mercilessly abused Pat and his siblings to inculcate discipline. After completing his graduation from The Military College of South Carolina, he worked as a teacher in Beaufort. Conroy refused to inflict corporeal punishment on young students. Consequently, he was fired but this didn't deter his motto. He raised his voice against physical torture through his books-- the Price of Tides, The Lords of Discipline, the Great Santini and his memoir My Losing Season. Though he's criticized for being long-winded and purplish but his fans are moved by his naked emotionalism and inspiring ideas projected in his book. He was perhaps the most recognized figure of 20th century Southern Literature. His work was revived on the silver screen through Donna Musil's award-winning documentary Brats: Our Journey Home. Even though the writer is gone, we remember him through his quotes that will continue to inspire and move all of us. We have excerpted Pat Conroy's most popular quotes from his famous books and writings. A collection of Pat Conroy quotes just for you!

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You get a little moody sometimes but I think that's because you like to read. People that like to read are always a little fucked up.

Pat Conroy

Happiness is an accident of nature, a beautiful and flawless aberration.

Pat Conroy

Music could ache and hurt, that beautiful music was a place a suffering man could hide.

Pat Conroy

Once you have traveled, the voyage never ends, but is played out over and over again in the quietest chambers. The mind can never break off from the journey.

Pat Conroy

Without music and dance, life is a journey through a desert.

Pat Conroy

I don’t know why it is that I have always been happier thinking of somewhere I have been or wanted to go, than where I am at the time. I find it difficult to be happy in the present.

Pat Conroy

A story untold could be the one that kills you.

Pat Conroy

I’ve never had anyone’s approval, so I’ve learned to live without it.

Pat Conroy

My wound is geography. It is also my anchorage, my port of call.

Pat Conroy

I could bear the memory, but I could not bear the music that made the memory such a killing thing.

Pat Conroy

Fantasy is one of the soul's brighter porcelains.

Pat Conroy

When mom and dad went to war the only prisoners they took were the children

Pat Conroy

Here is all I ask of a book- give me everything. Everything, and don't leave out a single word.

Pat Conroy

We set down feasts for each other and treated our love with tongues of fire. Our bodies were fields of wonder to us.

Pat Conroy

Her laughter was a shiny thing, like pewter flung high in the air.

Pat Conroy

These are the quicksilver moments of my childhood I cannot remember entirely. Irresistible and emblematic, I can recall them only in fragments and shivers of the heart.

Pat Conroy

Anyone who knows me well must understand and be sympathetic to my genuine need to be my own greatest hero. It is not a flaw of character; it is a catastrophe.

Pat Conroy

The only word for goodness is goodness, and it is not enough.

Pat Conroy

Rape is a crime against sleep and memory; it's afterimage imprints itself like an irreversible negative from the camera obscura of dreams.

Pat Conroy

Man wonders but God decides When to kill the Prince of Tides.

Pat Conroy

She was one of those Southerners who knew from an early age that the South could never be more for them than a fragrant prison, administered by a collective of loving but treacherous relatives.

Pat Conroy

There is no teacher more discriminating or transforming than loss.

Pat Conroy

Men are prisoners of their genitalia and women are the keepers of the keys to paradise.

Pat Conroy

Carolina beach music," Dupree said, coming up on the porch. "The holiest sound on earth.

Pat Conroy

But even her demons she invested with inordinate beauty, consecrated them with the dignity of her attention.

Pat Conroy

A family is one of nature's solubles; it dissolves in time like salt in rainwater.

Pat Conroy

But no one walks out of his family without reprisals: a family is too disciplined an army to offer compassion to its deserters.

Pat Conroy

There are no ideas in the South, just barbecue.

Pat Conroy

He was one of those rare men who are capable of being fully in love only once in their lives.

Pat Conroy

Writing poetry and reading books causes brain damage.

Pat Conroy

I'd be a conservative if I'd never met any. They're selfish, mean-spirited, egocentric, reactionary, and boring.

Pat Conroy

Some things don’t mix. Some things don’t mix at all, but sometimes in life you have to take the risk.

Pat Conroy

A library could show you everything if you knew where to look.

Pat Conroy

Walking the streets of Charleston in the late afternoons of August was like walking through gauze or inhaling damaged silk.

Pat Conroy

Writing is the only way I have to explain my own life to myself.

Pat Conroy

I stood face to face with the moon and the ocean and the future that spread out with all its bewildering immensity before me.

Pat Conroy

It's impossible to explain to a Yankee what `tacky' is. They simply have no word for it up north, but my God, do they ever need one.

Pat Conroy

Know this. I think you could be special if you only thought there was anything special about yourself.

Pat Conroy

I had come to a place where I was meant to be. I don't mean anything so prosaic as a sense of coming home. This was different, very different. It was like arriving at a place much safer than home.

Pat Conroy

In families, there are no crimes beyond forgiveness.

Pat Conroy

I lived with the terrible knowledge that one day I would be an old man still waiting for my real life to start. Already, I pitied that old man.

Pat Conroy

Like everything else, love's not worth much without some action to back it up.

Pat Conroy

Honor is the presence of God in man.

Pat Conroy

My soul found ease and rest in the companionship of books.

Pat Conroy

Because she deserved my tears if anyone on earth ever did. I could feel the tears within me, undiscovered, and untouched in their inland sea. Those tears had been with me always.

Pat Conroy

Evil would always come to me disguised in systems and dignified by law.

Pat Conroy

Love's action. It isn't talk and it never has been.

Pat Conroy

We've pretended too much in our family, Luke, and hidden far too much. I think we're all going to pay a high price for our inability to face the truth.

Pat Conroy

She had so mastered the strategies of camouflage that her own history had seemed a series of well-placed mirrors that kept her hidden from herself.

Pat Conroy

I was the only person in the world who thought it was a military duty to appear to be in a good mood.

Pat Conroy

The English language on her tongue became a smoke-screen, without her eyes changing expression in the least.

Pat Conroy

A story is a living thing, it moves and shifts...

Pat Conroy

Except for memory, time would have no meaning at all.

Pat Conroy

Losing prepares you for the heartbreak, setback, and the tragedy that you will encounter in the world more than winning ever can. By licking your wounds you learn how to avoid getting wounded the next time.

Pat Conroy

I was trying to unravel the complicated trigonometry of the radical thought that silence could make up the greatest lie ever told.

Pat Conroy

My mother's voice and my father's fists are two bookends of my childhood, and they form the basis of my art.

Pat Conroy

You do not learn how to write novels in a writing program. You learn how by leading an interesting life. Open yourself up to all experience. Let life pour through you the way light pours through leaves.

Pat Conroy

The fruit tasted foreign but indigenous, like sunlight a tree had changed through patience.

Pat Conroy

...I realize words are never enough; they stutter and cleave to the roof of my mouth.

Pat Conroy

Time moves funny and it's hard to pin down. Occasionally, time offers you a hundred opportunities to do the right thing. Sometimes, it gives you only one chance.

Pat Conroy

Cameras are a lifesaver for very shy people who have nowhere else to hide. Behind a lens they can disguise the fact that they have nothing to say to strangers.

Pat Conroy

I would always be a better hater of things and institutions than a lover of them.

Pat Conroy

Good coaching is good teaching and nothing else.

Pat Conroy

There were far worse strategies in life than to try to make each aspect of one's existence a minor work of art.

Pat Conroy

One can learn anything, anything at all, I thought, if provided by a gifted and passionate teacher.

Pat Conroy

In Charleston, more than elsewhere, you get the feeling that the twentieth century is a vast, unconscionable mistake.

Pat Conroy

I realized early that unless you're willing to kill the innocent, you can't win.

Pat Conroy

There are no verdicts to childhood, only consequences, and the bright freight of memory.

Pat Conroy

I take it as an article of faith that the novels I've loved will live inside me forever.

Pat Conroy

She had awakened something in him that had slumbered far too long. Not only did he feel passion, he felt the return of hope.

Pat Conroy

Perfect doesn't just mean happy. Perfect can have lots of different parts. - Niles.

Pat Conroy

It did not look like the work of God, but it might have represented the handicraft of a God with a joyous sense of humor, a dancing God who loved mischief as much as prayer, and playfulness as much as mischief.

Pat Conroy

The pursuit of greatness means that laziness has no place in your life.

Pat Conroy

My soul grazes like a lamb on the beauty of an indrawn tide.

Pat Conroy

The human soul can always use a new tradition. Sometimes we require them.

Pat Conroy

He treated the stars as though they were love songs written to him by God.

Pat Conroy

Love had always issued out of the places that hurt the most.

Pat Conroy

Paranoia has a sharper taste if the danger is real.

Pat Conroy

Her view of men was one-dimensional, but not inaccurate: men were prisoners of their genitalia and women were the keepers of the keys to paradise.

Pat Conroy

Humanity is best described as inhumanity.

Pat Conroy

They succeeded not only in making me normal but also in making me dull .

Pat Conroy

Scarlett (O'Hara) taught that one could be hungry and despairing, but not broken and not without resources, spiritual in nature, that precluded one from surrendering without a fight

Pat Conroy

Violence send deep roots into the heart, it has no seasons, it is always ripe, evergreen.

Pat Conroy

And I was glad she had the camera as a fence to protect herself, an excuse to be invisible. Cameras are a lifesaver for the very shy people who have nowhere else to hide.

Pat Conroy

Words are pretty, but anyone can talk. Pay attention to the people who perform.

Pat Conroy

The body's a funny thing. It's so full of surprises that it makes conventional wisdom seem silly.

Pat Conroy

The most powerful words in English are, "Tell me a story.

Pat Conroy

The tide was a poem that only time could create, and I watched it stream and brim and makes its steady dash homeward, to the ocean.

Pat Conroy

The mind is an intricate mechanism that can be run on the fuels of both victory and defeatism.

Pat Conroy

Take the local, take the express, don't get off till you reach success -- Sidney Rosen (Prince Of Tides)

Pat Conroy

The whole construct of my universe was a cunning, entangled network of lies. I had to start over again. I knew that. And I had to begin by ceasing to loathe myself for my difference from the rest.

Pat Conroy

Hurt is a great teacher, maybe the greatest of all.

Pat Conroy

The water was pure and cold and came out of the Apennines tasting like snow melted in the hands of a pretty girl.

Pat Conroy

I lit a cigarette and began puffing on it as I drank one quick beer after another. I was neither a drinker nor a smoker nor a fighter, but I had planned to be all three on this day.

Pat Conroy

I became one of those anonymous Americans who tries to keep his mind sharp and inquisitive while performing all the humiliating rituals of the middle class

Pat Conroy

A man's only got so many yeses inside him before he uses them all up.

Pat Conroy

I've always admired people who give accurate directions, and the tribe is small.

Pat Conroy

In our modern age, there are writers who have heaped scorn on the very idea of the primacy of story. I'd rather warm my hands on a sunlit ice floe than try to coax fire from the books they carve from glaciers.

Pat Conroy

I was born in the age of "alas".

Pat Conroy

...Father made a fetish out of performing tasks the correct way. There was an efficiency and economy of his motions that I always found a pleasure to watch and a pain to mimic.

Pat Conroy