“You know what I say to people when I hear they’re writing anti-war books?” “No. What do you say, Harrison Starr?” “I say, ‘Why don’t you write an anti-glacier book instead?’” What he meant, of course, was that there would always be wars, that they were as easy to stop as glaciers. I believe that, too. And even if wars didn’t keep coming like glaciers, there would still be plain old death.
So it goes.
Another thing they taught was that nobody was ridiculous or bad or disgusting. Shortly before my father died, he said to me, “You know—you never wrote a story with a villain in it.” I told him that was one of the things I learned in college after the war.
The very toughest reporters and writers were women who had taken over the jobs of men who’d gone to war.