Faces in the fire

"(Gosh. A sudden panic: can you hear any of that, those of you who already own the album or who are interested enough in this description to check it out? Possibly not. But - panic over - this book isn't predicated on you and me sharing the ability to hear exactly the sane things; in other words, it isn't music criticism. All I'm hoping here is that you have equivalents, that you spend a lot of time listening to music and seeing faces in its fire.)"

- Nick Hornby, 31 Songs, p.112

Real life vs fantasy

"Oscar Wilde once said that one's real life is often the life one does not lead. Well, fucking right on, Oscar. My real life was full of headlining shows at Wembley and Madison Square Garden and platinum records, and Grammies, and that wasn't the life I was leading, which is maybe why it felt like I could throw it away. The life I was leading didn't let me… be who I thought I was."

- A Long Way Down, Nick Hornby, p.24


"It’s the daydreaming that does it. I’m doing the usual thing - imagining in tiny detail the entire course of the relationship, from first kiss, to bed, to moving in together, to getting married (in the past I have even organised the track listing of the party tapes), to how pretty she’ll look when she’s pregnant, to names of children - until suddenly I realise there’s nothing left to actually, like, happen. I’ve done it all, lived through the whole relationship in my head. I’ve watched the film on fast-forward; I know the whole plot, the ending, all the good bits. Now I’ve got to rewind and watch it all over again in real time, and where’s the fun in that?"

- High Fidelity, Nick Hornby (Indigo, 1996), p.247