Colombian novelist, short-story writer, screenwriter, and journalist
Gabriel José de la Concordia García Márquez (6 March 1927 – 17 April 2014) was a Colombian novelist, short-story writer, screenwriter, and journalist, known affectionately as Gabo throughout Latin America. Considered one of the most significant authors of the 20th century, particularly in the Spanish language, he was awarded the 1972 Neustadt International Prize for Literature and the 1982 Nobel Prize in Literature. He pursued a self-directed education that resulted in leaving law school for a career in journalism. From early on he showed no inhibitions in his criticism of Colombian and foreign politics. In 1958, he married Mercedes Barcha Pardo; they had two sons, Rodrigo and Gonzalo.
García Márquez started as a journalist and wrote many acclaimed non-fiction works and short stories, but is best known for his novels, such as One Hundred Years of Solitude (1967), Chronicle of a Death Foretold (1981), and Love in the Time of Cholera (1985). His works have achieved significant critical acclaim and widespread commercial success, most notably for popularizing a literary style known as magic realism, which uses magical elements and events in otherwise ordinary and realistic situations. Some of his works are set in the fictional village of Macondo (mainly inspired by his birthplace, Aracataca), and most of them explore the theme of solitude.
Upon García Márquez's death in April 2014, Juan Manuel Santos, the president of Colombia, called him "the greatest Colombian who ever lived."
SolitudeThe secret of a good old age is simply an honorable pact with solitude.
SolitudeShe felt so old, so worn out, so far away from the best moments of her life that she even yearned for those that she remembered as the worst… Her heart of compressed ash, which had resisted the most telling blows of daily reality without strain, fell apart with the first waves of nostalgia. The need to feel sad was becoming a vice as the years eroded her. She became human in her solitude.
BooksMost critics don't realize that a novel like One Hundred Years of Solitude is a bit of a joke, full of signals to close friends; and so, with some pre-ordained right to pontificate they take on the responsibility of decoding the book and risk making terrible fools of themselves.
SolitudeHe really had been through death, but he had returned because he could not bear the solitude.
SolitudeMore than mother and son, they were accomplices in solitude.
BooksSolitudeIn the end all books are written for your friends. The problem after writing One Hundred Years of Solitude was that now I no longer know whom of the millions of readers I am writing for; this upsets and inhibits me. It's like a million eyes are looking at you and you don't really know what they think.
SolitudeBut he only found her in the image that saturated his private and terrible solitude.
SolitudeBoth looked back then on the wild revelry...and they lamented that it had cost them so much of their lives to find the paradise of shared solitude.
SolitudeLost in the solitude of his immense power, he began to lose direction.
JealousyJealousy knows more than truth does.
LoveMarriageIt was as if they had leapt over the arduous cavalry of conjugal life and gone straight to the heart of love. They were together in silence like an old married couple wary of life, beyond the pitfalls of passion, beyond the brutal mockery of hope and the phantoms of disillusion: beyond love. For they had lived together long enough to know that love was always love, anytime and anyplace, but it was more solid the closer it came to death.
FriendshipI never had intimate friends, and the few who came close are in New York. By which I mean they're dead, because that's where I suppose condemned souls go in order not to endure the truth of their past lives.
The more transparent the writing, the more visible the poetry.
Wherever they might be they always remember that the past was a lie, that memory has no return, that every spring gone by could never be recovered, and that the wildest and most tenacious love was an ephemeral truth in the end.
For those who may be hurting over lost love: Don't cry because it is over... smile because it happened.
No, not rich. I am a poor man with money, which is not the same thing.
...they enjoyed the miracle of loving each other as much at the table as in bed, and they grew to be so happy that even when they were two worn-out old people they kept on blooming like children and playing together like dogs.
One night a friend lent me a book of short stories by Franz Kafka. I went back to the pension where I was staying and began to read The Metamorphosis. The first line almost knocked me off the bed. I was so surprised. The first line reads, “As Gregor Samsa awoke that morning from uneasy dreams, he found himself transformed in his bed into a gigantic insect. . . .” When I read the line I thought to myself that I didn’t know anyone was allowed to write things like that. If I had known, I would have started writing a long time ago. So I immediately started writing short stories.
But when a woman decides to sleep with a man, there is no wall she will not scale, no fortress she will not destroy, no moral consideration she will not ignore at its very root: there is no God worth worrying about.
Don't open that door," she said. "The hallway is full of difficult dreams." And I asked her: "How do you know?" And she told me: "Because I was there a moment ago and I had to come back when I discovered I was sleeping on my heart.
Take advantage of it now, while you are young, and suffer all you can, because these things don't last your whole life.
This was when she asked him whether it was true that love conquered all, as the songs said. 'It is true', he replied, 'but you would do well not to believe it.
Time was not passing...it was turning in a circle.
i discovered that my obsession for having each thing in the right place, each subject at the right time, each word in the right style, was not the well-deserved reward of an ordered mind, but just the opposite: a complete system of pretense invented by me to hide the disorder of my nature.
Your first realization when you become an important person is that all day and all night, whatever the circumstances, people want to hear you talk about yourself.
Today, when I saw you, I realized that what is between us is nothing more than an illusion.
The truth is I'm getting old, I said. We already are old, she said with a sigh. What happens is that you don't feel it on the inside, but from the outside everybody can see it.
The heart's memory eliminates the bad and magnifies the good.
Her first reaction was one of hope, because his eyes were open and shining with a radiant light she had never seen there before. She prayed to God to give him at least a moment so that he would not go without knowing how much she had love him despite all their doubts, and she felt an irresistible longing to begin life with him over again so that they could say what they had left unsaid and do everything right that they had done badly in the past. But she had to give in to the intransigence of death. (Love in the Time of Cholera)
Just imagine, a cow on the balcony of the nation, what an awful thing, what a shitty country.
and the two of them loved each other for a long time in silence without making love again.
What is essential, therefore, is not that you no longer believe, but that God continues to believe in you.
For they had lived together long enough to know that love was always love, anytime and anyplace, but it was more solid the closer it came to death.
It was also her nature that caused her letters to avoid emotional pitfalls and confine themselves to relating the events of her daily life in the utilitarian style of a ship's log. In reality they were distracted letters, intended to keep the coals alive without putting her hand in the fire, while Florentino Ariza burned himself alive in every line.
The people one loves should take all their things with them when they die.
Both described at the same time how it was always March there and always Monday, and then they understood that José Arcadio Buendía was not as crazy as the family said, but that he was the only one who had enough lucidity to sense the truth of the fact that time also stumbled and had accidents and could therefore splinter and leave an eternalized fragment in a room.
There is no greater glory than to die for love.
wisdom comes to us when it can no longer do any good.
She would defend herself, saying that love, no matter what else it might be, was a natural talent. She would say: You are either born knowing how, or you never know.
races condemned to 100 years of solitude did not have a second opportunity on earth.
You can't eat hope,' the woman said. You can't eat it, but it sustains you,' the colonel replied.
Ultimately, literature is nothing but carpentry. With both you are working with reality, a material just as hard as wood.
The truth is that the first changes are so slow they pass almost unnoticed, and you go on seeing yourself as you always were, from the inside, but others observe you from the outside.
Everything that belonged to her husband made her weep again: his tasseled slippers, his pajamas under the pillow, the space of his absence in the dressing table mirror, his own odor on her skin. A vague thought made her shudder: "The people one loves should take all their things with them when they die.
To oppression, plundering and abandonment, we respond with life.
Sex is one's consolation when love is not enough
The truth is that I know very few novelists who have been satisfied with the adaptation of their books for the screen.
Carmelia Montiel, a twenty-year-old virgin, had just bathed in orange-blossom water and was strewing rosemary leaves on Pilar Ternera's bed when the shot rang out. Aureliano José had been destined to find with her the happiness that Amaranta had denied him, to have seven children, and to die in her arms of old age, but the bullet that entered his back and shattered his chest had been directed by a wrong interpretation of the cards.
They were so close to each other that they preferred death to separation.
I don't know who said that novelists read the novels of others only to figure out how they are written. I believe it's true. We aren't satisfied with the secrets exposed on the surface of the page: we turn the book around to find the seams.
I discovered the miracle that all things that sound are music, including the dishes and silverware in the dishwasher, as long as they fulfill the illusion of showing us where life is heading.
I can't think of any one film that improved on a good novel, but I can think of many good films that came from very bad novels.
Between the covers of the books that no one had ever read again, in the old parchments damaged by dampness, a livid flower had prospered, and in the air that had been the purest and brightest in the house an unbearable smell of rotten memories floated.
There is bound to be someone driven mad by love who will give you the chance to study the effects of gold cyanide on a cadaver. And when you do find one, observe with care, they almost always have crystals in their heart
Over the weekend the vultures got into the presidential palace by pecking through the screens on the balcony windows and the flapping of their wings stirred up the stagnant time inside, and at dawn on Monday the city awoke out of its lethargy of centuries with the warm, soft breeze of a great man dead and rotting grandeur.
If God hadn't rested on Sunday, He would have had time to finish the world.
A short time later, when the carpenter was taking measurements for the coffin, through the window they saw a light rain of tiny yellow flowers falling. They fell on the town all through the night in a silent storm, and they covered the roofs and blocked the doors and smothered the animals who slept outdoors. So many flowers fell from the sky that in the morning the streets were carpeted with a compact cushion and they had to clear them away with shovels and rakes so that the funeral procession could pass by.
When you have a healthy appetite there is no such thing as bad bread.
Thinking that it would console him, she took a piece of charcoal and erased the innumerable loves that he still owed her for, and she voluntarily brought up her own most solitary sadnesses so as not to leave him alone in his weeping.
he dared to explore her withered neck w/his fingertips…her hips w/their decaying bones, her thighs with their aging veins.
As I kissed her the heat of her body increased, and it exhaled a wild, untamed fragrance.
They looked like two children," she told me. And that thought frightened her, because she'd always felt that only children are capable of everything.
She knew that he loved her above all else, more than anything in the world, but only for his own sake.
Four geological eras had to pass so that human beings would be able to outsing the birds and die for love.
When I sit down to write, which is the essential moment in my life, I am completely alone. Whenever I write a book, I accumulate a lot of documentation. That background material is the most intimate part of my private life. It's a little embarrassing - like being seen in your underwear It's like the way magicians never tell others how they make a dove come out of a hat.
He governed as if he felt predestined to never die
And nevertheless, when they watched him leave the house, this man they themselves had urged to conquer the world, then they were the ones left with the terror that he would never return. That was their life. Love, if it existed, was something separate: another life.
Nevertheless, no matter how much they killed themselves with work, no matter how much money they eked out, and no matter how many schemes they thought of, their guardian angels were asleep with fatigue while they put in coins and took them out trying to get just enough to live with.
There was a house at the foot of the tower, close to the thunder of the waves breaking against the cliffs, where love was more intense because it seemed like a shipwreck.
In some way impossible to ascertain, after so many years of absense, Jose Arcadio was still an autumnal child, terribly sad and solitary.
What does he say?' he asked. 'He’s very sad,’ Úrsula answered, ‘because he thinks that you’re going to die.' 'Tell him,' the colonel said, smiling, 'that a person doesn’t die when he should but when he can.
His place was always set at the table, in case he rturned from the dead without warning .
Before reaching the final line, however, he had already understood that he would never leave that room, for it was foreseen that the city of mirrors (or mirages) would be wiped out by the wind and exiled from the memory of men at the precise moment when Aureliano Babilonia would finish deciphering the parchments, and that everything written on them was unrepeatable since time immemorial and forever more, because races condemned to one hundred years of solitude did not have a second opportunity on earth.
What Uncle Leo XIII never suspected was that his nephew's courage did not come from the need to survive or from a brute indifference inherited from his father, but from a driving need for love, which no obstacle in this world or the next would ever break.