Meghan Daum Quotes

A typical day in my writing life starts with looking at pictures of real estate online for at least 20 minutes. If I happen to be actual... - Meghan Daum

A typical day in my writing life starts with looking at pictures of real estate online for at least 20 minutes. If I happen to be actually in the market for a house, I do this for 40 minutes. Then I walk my dog, come back home, and tell myself I can look at real estate for another five minutes.
— Meghan Daum

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A young female essayist saying they're influenced by Joan Didion is like a young female singer-songwriter saying they're influenced by Joni Mitchell.

Meghan Daum

Air travelers, of course, are famous for their hubris. They carry on too many bags and use the restroom when the seat-belt sign is on.

Meghan Daum

Almost nothing is more tedious than complaining about the weather.

Meghan Daum

As a mentor and an advocate, I've seen no end to the ways that childless people can contribute to the lives and well-being of kids - and adults, for that matter.

Meghan Daum

As humans with egos and feelings, none of us wants to be pilloried. But as thinkers and writers, it's our job to express opinions forthrightly and without qualifying them out of existence.

Meghan Daum

As with 'feminism,' not to mention 'liberalism' and 'conservatism,' 'political correctness' tends to mean what you want it to mean, which also pretty much amounts to utter meaninglessness.

Meghan Daum

Because of social media, we have a lot of personal essays floating around; you see them on Facebook: everyone's either reading them or writing them. Some of them are great; some of them are diary entries put forth as essays.

Meghan Daum

Becoming a parent is always going to be a default setting. I truly believe there will always be more people who want to have children than who don't.

Meghan Daum

Before digital and mobile communications effectively tethered us to an invisible, infinite 'wire,' even those with the most hectic schedules were usually willing to answer the phone if they happened to be home when it rang.

Meghan Daum

Being taken down a few pegs is humbling. Knowing that life is not easy or fair is humbling. Receiving a great honor - well, that would be called an honor.

Meghan Daum

Checking email every 45 seconds is not only compulsive, it's presumptuous. It suggests a belief that anyone who sends us a message needs us to read it immediately, even if the message is from SkyMall telling us our Bigfoot Garden Yeti statue has shipped.

Meghan Daum

Choose what you actually want to do rather than what you think will impress people on Facebook. Ironically, when you do this, something amazing happens; what you produce stands a better chance of getting recognition. Not just on Facebook, but in the real world.

Meghan Daum

Confessions are not processed or analysed; they're told in a moment of desperation to a priest or to somebody interrogating you about a crime.

Meghan Daum

Each year, in my quaint efforts to send out paper holiday cards with personal messages, I probably discard one for every three I actually manage to put in the mail. The reason is that my handwriting is now less legible than it was when I was in the second grade.

Meghan Daum

Few targets of ridicule are as easy to hit as owners and handlers of competitive show dogs.

Meghan Daum

For a kid, self-esteem can be as close at hand as a sports victory or a sense of belonging in a peer group. It's a much more complicated and elusive proposition for adults, subject to the responsibilities and vicissitudes of grown-up life.

Meghan Daum

For me, writing essays is very much about processing ideas and offering them up to the reader so that they are fully cooked.

Meghan Daum

For my part, if I'm working while flying, I'm often a bit relieved to be forced to shut down the computer on final descent. But I guess I'm a slacker.

Meghan Daum

Handwriting challenges aside, I love paper cards. I love the endless stewing involved in picking them out at the store. I love buying holiday stamps at the post office, and I love that 'whoosh' sound the cards make when I drop them into the mail slot.

Meghan Daum

I always lamented that I wasn't a writer during the late '60s and the early '70s, with the New Journalism and Tom Wolfe and Hunter Thompson and all those people.

Meghan Daum

I always tell writers that it's good to have an area of expertise. It's a really practical answer, I know, but know about science or about sports or about medicine, so you can work as a science writer or a sports writer. Don't just know about yourself.

Meghan Daum

I am weary of happiness, both as a word and as a concept.

Meghan Daum

I don't confess in my work because to me, that implies that you're dumping all your guilt and sins on the page and asking the reader to forgive you.

Meghan Daum

I don't keep a diary or a journal. Sometimes I'll send emails to friends, and that's a way of recording what I was thinking at any given time. But I've never been a journal keeper.

Meghan Daum

I don't think anyone's ever accused me of too much self-love.

Meghan Daum

I have a distinct memory, dating back to 1989 or so, of sitting around with my college dorm mates talking about a new term that was popping up everywhere: 'political correctness.'

Meghan Daum

I have bougainvillea and a magnolia tree outside my window. Not that anything will ever beat the view I had from my desk window in my little farmhouse in Nebraska. Just a dirt road stretching out as far as you could see, with prairie grass on either side.

Meghan Daum

I love the essay. It's my favorite genre to work in.

Meghan Daum

I love writing essays and articles, so it's hard for me to resist taking assignments that inevitably pull me away from larger projects.

Meghan Daum

I loved 'About Schmidt'. I like Alexander Payne's work a lot.

Meghan Daum

I loved Woody Allen's short pieces. I was equally influenced by Woody Allen and Norman Mailer. I was very into this idea of being high-low, of being serious and intellectual but also making really broad jokes.

Meghan Daum

I never sit down to write anything personal unless I know the subject is going to go beyond my own experience and address something larger and more universal.

Meghan Daum

I respond to about a quarter of comments. It's a good barometer of my mental health - when I'm healthy and busy, I don't read them.

Meghan Daum

I started off doing fiction in 1993. It didn't occur to me to do nonfiction because it wasn't a thing yet. So I was bumbling around, writing short stories, and then I took a nonfiction workshop, and I realized that this was what I was supposed to do.

Meghan Daum

I think people seem to want to read pieces that are shorter but not as short as the pieces they can read in small bites on the Internet. It may be that the sort of long essays are hitting a sweet spot between the tiny morsels online and the full-length book.

Meghan Daum

I think whatever generation you're in has a nostalgia for the generations past and the generations you weren't in.

Meghan Daum

I was enamored of New York City intellectual life and was really into Philip Roth because I was raised by self-loathing Midwesterners who were from southern Illinois, who felt like fish out of water when they came to the East Coast when I was a kid.

Meghan Daum

I was just 13 when 'The Big Chill' was released in late September 1983, so I didn't catch all of its nuances when I sneaked into the theater to see it. But I could tell one thing for sure: These people were grown-ups.

Meghan Daum

I work really hard not to have a kitsch tone to any of my work, particularly radio stuff, which sometimes goes in that direction on certain programs.

Meghan Daum

I've always been interested in this notion of what is authentic and how we define that and why our culture imposes certain emotions and emotional constraints onto experiences.

Meghan Daum

I've been a freelancer my entire career, and, at any given time, I have several deadlines for all sorts of things, whether it's some magazine piece or ad copywriting or anything.

Meghan Daum

If anything, 'Fifty Shades of Grey' is a generic romance cynically engineered to appeal to the lowest common denominator of female fantasy.

Meghan Daum

If something good happens to you, and no one knows it, did it really happen? Moreover, if you don't publicize your accomplishments and good fortune, are you essentially saying you don't care about them?

Meghan Daum

If you do the things you enjoy and are good at, I really have a feeling that that will lead to having a fulfilling life, and people with fulfilling lives are able to be 'good people.'

Meghan Daum

If you must know, my parents came from pretty hardscrabble backgrounds in the southern Midwest. I certainly didn't grow up poor, but I did spend my 20s and early 30s juggling temp jobs and choking on massive student-loan debt.

Meghan Daum

In a world of oversharing, we don't want to be unknown or unseen. We don't want to be left out.

Meghan Daum

In about an 18-month period, my mother got sick and died, and then I had a freak illness less than a year later and almost died myself. And I found in both of those situations that there was this expectation to have a kind of transformative experience.

Meghan Daum

In my own writing, I tend to be very honest, and my goal is to identify something people think but are afraid to say. That's not the general cultural expectation of women.

Meghan Daum

In the world of opinion writing, there's something called the 'to be sure' paragraph. A sort of rhetorical antibiotic, it seeks to defend against critics by injecting a tiny bit of counter-argument before moving on with the main point.

Meghan Daum

A typical day in my writing life starts with looking at pictures of real estate online for at least 20 minutes. If I happen to be actually in the market for a house, I do this for 40 minutes. Then I walk my dog, come back home, and tell myself I can look at real estate for another five minutes.

Meghan Daum