The Best Junot Diaz quotes

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Junot Diaz has been an inspiration to me in my career, and I want to share his best quotes with you. He was born as the son of Dominican immigrants who spoke little English, a language which he learned at school. His family was very poor and they moved from one tenement apartment to another looking for better living conditions but were never able to find them. Diaz went on to graduate from Rutgers University with degrees in English and African-American studies before attending Cornell Law School where he earned his J.D., becoming a practicing lawyer for two years before turning back to writing full-time.
We are glad to present you the most known statements from Junot Diaz.

Discover the best World, Human Beings, Books, Writers, Work, Love, Time, Writing quotes from Junot Diaz, and much more.


About Junot Diaz

birth of the author

December 31, 1968

occupation of the author

Professor, Writer

country of the author

American, Dominican

education of the author

Rutgers University

date of the author


award of the author

Notable Awards:
Guggenheim Fellowship


Out of nowhere you said, I love you. For whatever it’s worth. — Junot Diaz

Nobody warned me that when you fall in love, you really fall in love forever. — Junot Diaz

And because love, real love, is not so easily shed. — Junot Diaz

Know that in this world there’s somebody who will always love you. — Junot Diaz

out of nowhere you said i love you for whatever it s worth Junot Diaz quote

The half–life of love is forever. — Junot Diaz

Love was a rare thing, easily confused with a million other things, and if anybody knew this to be true it was him. — Junot Diaz

Tell her that you love her hair, that you love her skin, her lips, because, in truth, you love them more than you love your own. — Junot Diaz

Success, after all, loves a witness, but failure can’t exist without one. — Junot Diaz

I love the kookiness of our speech. Speech is like wonderful magic and poetry in itself. I’ve always had to crib a lot from what I’ve heard. — Junot Diaz

nobody warned me that when you fall in love you really fall in love forever Junot Diaz quote

Beli at thirteen believed in love like a seventy–year–old widow who’s been abandoned by family, husband, children and fortune believes in God. — Junot Diaz

You were at the age where you could fall in love with a girl over an expression, over a gesture. That’s what happened with your girlfriend, Paloma–she stooped to pick up her purse and your heart flew out of you. — Junot Diaz


You can’t be a human without seeing. — Junot Diaz

Because I can’t seem to escape it. It’s a way for me to address and counter my questions about what it means to be human, or, in my case a Dominican human who grew up in New Jersey. — Junot Diaz

The body is what reminds us on a daily basis that we’re human. The body defies us, it betrays us, we have to struggle with it, you know. And it reveals in curious and in abiding ways how we are not perfect. — Junot Diaz

you can t be a human without seeing Junot Diaz quote

I think that if you’re writing about the human condition, my God, you’ve got to start at base: point zero, point one, is the body. — Junot Diaz


Colleagues are a wonderful thing–but mentors, that’s where the real work gets done. — Junot Diaz

Sometimes you just have to try, even if you know it won’t work. — Junot Diaz

Personally I always feel like I could use a little more of poetry apothegmatic power in my own work but we’re always lacking something. — Junot Diaz

Of course we all know that’s not how life works. The novel that is our life can end at any time. Sometimes even on page one. — Junot Diaz

colleagues are a wonderful thing but mentors that s where the real work gets done Junot Diaz quote

I write very, very slowly, and for me, I have to summon all sorts of resources to make one of these pieces work. — Junot Diaz

I know for a fact that–it’s just the way our biases work now in the industry of literature, but certainly a short story collection does not receive the same kind of attention as a novel. — Junot Diaz

In the months that follow you bend to the work, because it feels like hope, like grace––and because you know in your lying cheater’s heart that sometimes a start is all we ever get. — Junot Diaz

When I write, what I long for is not more realism or fiction but more courage. That’s what I always find myself short on and what I have to struggle to achieve in order that the work might live. — Junot Diaz

I do think that books are invaluable as a reservoir of what we call the human space. And this is why I think that, even if they’re threatened, the work that they do has an incalculable merit. — Junot Diaz

sometimes you just have to try even if you know it won t work Junot Diaz quote

I wring my hands because I know that as a dude, my privilege, my long–term deficiencies work against me in writing women, no matter how hard I try and how talented I am. — Junot Diaz

I sat down next to her. Took her hand. This can work, I said. All we have to do is try. — Junot Diaz

You keep waiting for the heaviness to leave you. You keep waiting for the moment you never think about the ex again. It doesn’t come. — Junot Diaz

The art is just really mysterious. If I understood it more, maybe I would write more. — Junot Diaz

Privilege does not operate without silence. — Junot Diaz

i sat down next to her took her hand this can work i said all we have to do is try Junot Diaz quote


I think one of the paradoxes of writing fiction is when people enjoy it, they want it to be real. So they look for connections. — Junot Diaz

I’m not writing fairy tales or object lessons. — Junot Diaz

I’m having so much trouble with writing. Maybe if I help other people, it’ll be easier for me. — Junot Diaz

Stereotypes, they’re sensual, cultural weapons. That’s the way that we attack people. At an artistic level, stereotypes are terrible writing. — Junot Diaz

In my view, a writer is a writer because even when there is no hope, even when nothing you do shows any sign of promise, you keep writing anyway. — Junot Diaz

i m not writing fairy tales or object lessons Junot Diaz quote


Books are wonderful, but they aren’t that powerful. — Junot Diaz

If you really want a prize, or if you really want applause, you should try to write as many books as humanly possible. — Junot Diaz

In order to write the book you want to write, in the end you have to become the person you need to become to write that book. — Junot Diaz

I have three storage units, and that’s no lie. Three storage units. All books. — Junot Diaz

Books don’t live and die by awards. You don’t listen to an Hector Lavoe album because it won some awards. — Junot Diaz

books are wonderful but they aren t that powerful Junot Diaz quote

When I was working on ‘Drown’–this was way back in the mid–’90s–I had this idea that I wanted to do another collected stories. I wanted to do another book like ‘Drown’ that focused specifically on infidelity. — Junot Diaz

I wrote my first sucio story, as I call them, in 1997. This was always my ‘cheater’s book,’ my book about sucios desgraciados. My plan was to write a book about how people deal with love and loss. — Junot Diaz

We hide so well. This is the bottom line: how hidden is male subjectivity? Name five books where male subjectivity is produced in an honest way. — Junot Diaz

I write for the people I grew up with. I took extreme pains for my book to not be a native informant. Not: ‘This is Dominican food. This is a Spanish word.’ I trust my readers, even non–Spanish ones. — Junot Diaz

Redundant Thematics

In Junot Diaz Statements


It took me 11 years to struggle through one dumb book, and every day you just want to give up. But you don’t find out you’re an artist because you do something really well. — Junot Diaz


Technically, I split my time between N.Y.C. and Boston. — Junot Diaz

For a long time, I let my mother say what she wanted about me, and what was worse, for a long time I believed her. — Junot Diaz

I just want some space to myself every now and then. Every time I’m with you I have this sense that you want something from me. — Junot Diaz

Any art worth its name requires you to be fundamentally lost for a very long time. — Junot Diaz

You never forget the discovery years. First kisses. The first time you try certain foods. — Junot Diaz

technically i split my time between n y c and boston Junot Diaz quote

I can’t imagine anybody who ends up being an artist who didn’t pass through a time of geekiness. — Junot Diaz

We can speculate. Last time I checked, the future doesn’t take my advice. — Junot Diaz

Sucks to be left out of adolescence, sort of like getting locked in the closet on Venus when the sun appears for the first time in a hundred years. — Junot Diaz

When you’re sixteen a body like this is free; when you’re forty it’s a full–time occupation. — Junot Díaz

The whole culture is telling you to hurry, while the art tells you to take your time. Always listen to the art. — Junot Diaz

any art worth its name requires you to be fundamentally lost for a very long time Junot Diaz quote

Donald] Trump is what happens in America every time it feels economically and politically threatened, and it encounters the limitations of its own white supremacists practices. — Junot Diaz

Dominican men are told to look at women all the time, but they’re definitely not told to see them. — Junot Diaz

An ear will never do you wrong, but I know writers who… most of the language they use is just extracted language from other languages they’ve read. I am a big–time reader, but I mix and match. — Junot Diaz

I think men spend so much time passing for being men. — Junot Diaz

I’ve been trying to write. I also spent a lot of time on different campuses, in conversation, helping other writers. That’s what I do: I teach them writing. — Junot Diaz

you never forget the discovery years first kisses the first time you try certain foods Junot Diaz quote

I was, as a kid, really obsessed with reading… that was about as geeky as you could possibly get. — Junot Diaz


When I became my masked identity I was this incredible little nerd, but in the real world I had to be this tough kid from the neighborhood. — Junot Diaz

The anti–immigrant logic has basically saturated our world. I’m staying, and I’m fighting. — Junot Diaz

Just the fact that you get to live and breathe and interact with the world–that’s pretty marvelous. — Junot Diaz

Once someone gets a little escape velocity going, ain’t no play in the world that will keep them from leaving. — Junot Diaz

the anti immigrant logic has basically saturated our world i m staying and i m fighting Junot Diaz quote

I’m one of those apocalyptics. From the start of my immigrant days, I’ve been fascinated by end–of–the–world stories, by outbreak narratives, and always wanted to set a world–ender on Hispaniola. — Junot Diaz

The world should always be concerned whenever a vast human rights violation occurs anywhere on the planet. — Junot Diaz

I mean, the nation in which we live–and the world in which we live–is so extraordinarily more like a future than the futures that we’re being sold on the screen and on television. — Junot Diaz

The truth is there ain’t no relationship in the world that doesn’t hit turbulence. — Junot Diaz

You need to learn how to walk the world, he told me. There’s a lot out there. — Junot Diaz

the truth is there ain t no relationship in the world that doesn t hit turbulence Junot Diaz quote

Travel light. She extended her arms to embrace her house, maybe the whole world. — Junot Diaz

As artists we are here to make you uncomfortable with the complexity of your reality. — Junot Diaz


The only difference between a published and unpublished writer is a tolerance for imperfection. — Junot Diaz

I always individuate myself from other writers who say they would die if they couldn’t write. For me, I’d die if I couldn’t read. — Junot Diaz

I never hear white writers get asked, ‘Do you worry about how you represent white people?’ — Junot Diaz

i never hear white writers get asked do you worry about how you represent white people Junot Diaz quote

What we [writers] do might be done in solitude and with great desperation, but it tends to produce exactly the opposite. It tends to produce community and in many people hope and joy. — Junot Diaz

I always think about myself as a writer; that comes out of being a reader first, and I don’t think I kind of got to really playing with language in any formal way probably until I was in my mid–twenties. — Junot Diaz

Used to be in the old days, only the pulp writers wrote like machines. Now everybody is expected to be literary John Henrys. So in that context someone like me is an anomaly. — Junot Diaz

I really am a believer that 99.99% of all the stories we need, not only as artists but as human beings, not only as writers but as readers, haven’t been written yet. Certainly haven’t been published yet. — Junot Diaz


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