the child grows enormous but never grows up
For the writer of fiction everything has its testing point in the eye, and the eye is an organ that eventually involves the whole personality, and as much of the world as can be got into it.
Flannery O’Connor, taken from The Cartoons
Needing people badly and not getting them may turn you in a creative direction, provided you have the other requirements.

Flannery O’Connor, 1956 letter to Betty Hester, taken from The Cartoons

the most immediately noticeable element of her comics are the characters’ sour expressions. nearly everyone’s mouth is downturned, oftentimes gruesomely so.

I can never agree with you that the Incarnation, or any truth, has to satisfy emotionally to be right.… There are long periods in the lives of all of us, and of the saints, when the truth as revealed by faith is hideous, emotionally disturbing, downright repulsive…. The thought of everybody lolling about in an emotionally satisfying faith is repugnant to me. I believe that we are ultimately directed Godward but that this journey is often impeded by emotion.
Flannery O’Connor (via my friend Nick Nowalk’s terrific blog)

I think there is no suffering greater than what is caused by the doubts of those who want to believe. I know what torment this is, but I can only see it, in myself anyway, as the process by which faith is deepened. A faith that just accepts is a child’s faith and all right for children, but eventually you have to grow religiously as every other way, though some never do.

What people don’t realize is how much religion costs. They think faith is a big electric blanket, when of course it is the cross. It is much harder to believe than not to believe. If you feel you can’t believe, you must at least do this: keep an open mind. Keep it open toward faith, keep wanting it, keep asking for it, and leave the rest to God.

Flannery O’Connor (via firstbreath90)
Does one’s integrity ever lie in what he is not able to do? I think that usually it does, for free will does not mean one will, but many wills conflicting in one man. Freedom cannot be conceived simply. It is a mystery…
Flannery O’Connor, “Author’s Note to the Second Edition” of Wise Blood (1962)
He had the feeling that everything he saw was a broken-off piece of some giant blank thing that he had forgotten had happened to him.
Flannery O’Connor, Wise Blood
I come from a family where the only emotion respectable to show is irritation. In some this tendency produces hives, in others literature, in me both.
Flannery O’Connor, The Habit of Being (via alaina)
Where you come from is gone, where you thought you were going to never was there, and where you are is no good unless you can get away from it. Where is there a place for you to be? No place… Nothing outside you can give you any place… In yourself right now is all the place you’ve got.
Flannery O’Connor, Wise Blood
To expect too much is to have a sentimental view of life and this is a softness that ends in bitterness.
Flannery O’Connor
austinkleon:

Flannery O’Connor, The Cartoons
Wow, so Fantagraphics is actually releasing a collection of Flannery O’Connor’s cartoons. I wrote about them back in 2007, when I could only find 2-3 images:
Few people know this, but Flannery O’Connor, one of my favorite writers, was also a cartoonist. She started out publishing cartoons in her high school and college newspapers, then tried to publish some in the New Yorker as a way to make money so that she could write her fiction. (That didn’t quite work out.) A few folks have noted that cartooning probably had some effect on writing her style: dig her grotesque caricatures and gift for combining the comic and the serious.
The Guardian has more of the story…what’s badass is that they’re all linocuts!

austinkleon:

Flannery O’Connor, The Cartoons

Wow, so Fantagraphics is actually releasing a collection of Flannery O’Connor’s cartoons. I wrote about them back in 2007, when I could only find 2-3 images:

Few people know this, but Flannery O’Connor, one of my favorite writers, was also a cartoonist. She started out publishing cartoons in her high school and college newspapers, then tried to publish some in the New Yorker as a way to make money so that she could write her fiction. (That didn’t quite work out.) A few folks have noted that cartooning probably had some effect on writing her style: dig her grotesque caricatures and gift for combining the comic and the serious.

The Guardian has more of the story…what’s badass is that they’re all linocuts!