Quotes by: Octavia E. Butler
Science fiction, extrasensory perception, and black people are judged by the worst elements they produce.
Getting your writing criticized can be a lot like getting skinned, and you respond to it just as enthusiastically.
I don't write about good and evil with this enormous dichotomy. I write about people. I write about people doing the kinds of things that people do.
If vampires were a separate species, and they were into genetic engineering, what would they engineer for?
At school I was always taller than the rest of my class, and because I was an only child, I was comfortable with adults but shy and awkward with other kids. I was quiet, bookish, and in spite of my size, hopeless at sports. In short, I was different. And even in the earliest grades, I got pounded for it.
The norm is white, apparently, in the view of people who see things in that way. For them, the only reason you would introduce a black character is to introduce this kind of abnormality. Usually, it's because you're telling a story about racism or at least about race.
Not everyone has been a bully or the victim of bullies, but everyone has seen bullying, and seeing it, has responded to it by joining in or objecting, by laughing or keeping silent, by feeling disgusted or feeling interested.
Beware, all too often we say what we hear others say. We think what we are told that we think. We see what we are permitted to see. Worse, we see what we are told that we see.
I don't know how much of a market there is for space opera. Just because it's in the movies doesn't mean magazines are buying it.
When I was between 2 and 3 years old, I got to know my first non-human being. The non-human was a cocker spaniel named Baba. We weren't friends, Baba and I, nor enemies. He wasn't my dog. He belonged to the people my mother worked for, and he lived in the house with them and us.
With a disaster like global warming, it's too late to worry about when it's looming except to figure out how to adapt to it.
Hollywood wants to go for the flash, because that's what a lot of them think science fiction is.
The major tragedies in life, there's just no compensation. But the minor ones you can always write about. It's my way of dealing, and it's a heck of a lot cheaper than psychiatrists. The story, you see, will get you through.
My race and sex had a great deal more to do with what people believed I could do than with what I actually could do.
When I was 7 and went to the zoo with my second-grade class, I saw chimpanzee eyes for the first time - the eyes of an unhappy animal, all alone, locked in a bare, concrete-floored, iron-barred cage in one of the nastier, old-fashioned zoos. I remember looking at the chimp, then looking away.
Sometimes being a friend means mastering the art of timing. There is a time for silence. A time to let go and allow people to hurl themselves into their own destiny. And a time to prepare to pick up the pieces when it's all over.
In countries where there are no racial differences or no religious differences, people find other reasons to set aside one certain group of people and generally spit in their direction.