Robert A. Heinlein, fully Robert Anson Heinlein, pen name for Anson MacDonald

Robert A.
Heinlein, fully Robert Anson Heinlein, pen name for Anson MacDonald

American Novelist, Hugo Award-winning Science Fiction Writer, called the "dean of science fiction writers"

Author Quotes

When it don?t rain, the roof don?t leak; when it rains, I can?t fix it nohow.

Winslow says I don't understand plotting and probably I don't - I have been congratulated many times on the skill shown in my plotting when I knew damn well that the story in question had not been plotted in advance at all. My notion of a story is an interesting situation in which a human being has to cope with a problem, does so, and thereby changes his personality, character, or evaluations in some measure because the coping has forced him to revise his thinking. How h copes with it I can't plot because that depends on his character, and I don't know his what his character is until i get acquainted with him. When I can hear the character talk then I'm all right - he works out his own salvation.

You are telling me that I did something because I was going to do something. Well, didn?t you? You were there. No, I didn?t?no? well, maybe I did, but it didn?t feel like it. Why should you expect it to? It was something totally new to your experience. But? but? Wilson took a deep breath and got control of himself. Then he reached back into his academic philosophical concepts and produced the notion he had been struggling to express. It denies all reasonable theories of causation. You would have me believe that causation can be completely circular. I went through because I came back from going through to persuade myself to go through. That?s silly. Well, didn?t you?

When one teaches, two learn.

Wisdom includes not getting angry unnecessarily. The Law ignores trifles and the wise man does, too.

You can go wrong by being too skeptical as readily as by being too trusting.

When railroading time comes you can railroad?but not before.

With just a touch more self-confidence and a liberal helping of ignorance I could have been a famous evangelist.

You can have peace. Or you can have freedom. Don't ever count on having both at once.

What did I want? I wanted a Roc's egg. I wanted a harem loaded with lovely odalisques less than the dust beneath my chariot wheels, the rust that never stained my sword. I wanted raw red gold in nuggets the size of your fist, and feed that lousy claim jumper to the huskies! I wanted to get up feeling brisk and go out and break some lances, then pick a likely wench for my droit du seigneur - I wanted to stand up to the Baron and dare him to touch my wench! I wanted to hear the purple water chuckling against the skin of the Nancy Lee in the cool of the morning watch and not another sound, nor any movement save the slow tilting of the wings of the albatross that had been pacing us the last thousand miles. I wanted the hurtling moons of Barsoom. I wanted Storisende and Poictesme, and Holmes shaking me awake to tell me, The game's afoot! I wanted to float down the Mississippi on a raft and elude a mob in company with the Duke of Bilgewater and Lost Dauphin. I wanted Prester John, and Excalibur held by a moon-white arm out of a silent lake. I wanted to sail with Ulysses and with Tros of Samothrace and to eat the lotus in a land that seemed always afternoon. I wanted the feeling of romance and the sense of wonder I had known as a kid. I wanted the world to be the way they had promised me it was going to be, instead of the tawdry, lousy, fouled-up mess it is. I had had one chance - for ten minutes yesterday afternoon. Helen of Troy, whatever your true name may be - and I had known it and I had let it slip away. Maybe one chance is all you ever get.

When the need arises ? and it does ? you must be able to shoot your own dog. Don't farm it out ? that doesn't make it nicer, it makes it worse.

Women and cats will do as they please, and men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea.

You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.

What distinguishes Buddhism from any other faith I?ve studied?from most human beings, really?is that the people who face the wall and the people who face away from it have never fought a war over it. They?re never going to agree?but they feel no need to. Buddha himself is supposed to have said, People with opinions just go around bothering each other.

When there?s nothing else you can do, breathe slower. There?s no way it can hurt, and it might help.

Women are amazing creatures-sweet, soft, gentle, and far more savage than we are.

You can't conquer a free man; the most you can do is kill him.

What do you ask after thirty years? Have they reached the stars yet? Who's cooking up 'The War to End War' this time? Do babies come out of test tubes? "Doc, do they still have popcorn machines in the lobbies of movie theatres?"

When you vote, you are exercising political authority, you're using force. And force, my friends, is violence. The supreme authority from which all other authorities are derived.

Women seem to have almost unlimited capacity for forgiveness. (Since it is usually a man who needs forgiveness, this must be a racial survival trait.)

What is supposed to happen in a democracy is that each sovereign citizen will always vote in the public interest for the safety and welfare of all. But what does happen is that he votes his own self-interest as he sees it.

When you?re rich, you don?t have friends; you just have endless acquaintances.

Women talk when they want to. Or don't.

What the self-styled modern artists are doing is a sort of unemotional pseudo-intellectual masturbation... whereas creative art is more like intercourse, in which the artist must seduce?render emotional-his audience, each time.

Whenever women have insisted on absolute equality with men, they have invariably wound up with the dirty end of the stick. What they are and what they can do makes them superior to men, and their proper tactic is to demand special privileges, all the traffic will bear. They should never settle merely for equality. For women, equality is a disaster.

Author Picture
First Name
Robert A.
Last Name
Heinlein, fully Robert Anson Heinlein, pen name for Anson MacDonald
Birth Date

American Novelist, Hugo Award-winning Science Fiction Writer, called the "dean of science fiction writers"