Quotations about   finish

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It is not yours to finish the task, but neither are you free to set it aside.

tarfon-finish-the-task-wist_info-quote

Tarfon (fl. 1st-2nd C AD) Jewish rabbi, sage
Mishnah, Pirkei Avot 2:15-16

Alt. trans.:
  • It is not incumbent upon you to finish the task, but neither are you free to absolve yourself from it.
  • It is not up to you to finish the task, but you are not free to avoid it.
  • We need not finish the task but neither can we desist from it.
  • Although I am not free to avoid doing the work, it is not always necessary that I finish the task.
  • You are not obligated to complete the work, but neither are you free to abandon it.
Added on 21-Nov-16 | Last updated 21-Nov-16
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Sophronia took a deep breath. “What, precisely, will I be expected to learn here?”

Lady Linette twirled one curl of blonde hair around the tip of one finger. “Information gathering and object retrieval, of course. But mostly, you should learn how to finish.”

“Finish what, exactly?”

“Why, anything or anyone who needs finishing, my dear.”

Gail Carriger (b. 1976) American archaeologist, author [pen name of Tofa Borregaard]
Etiquette & Espionage (2013)
Added on 13-Oct-16 | Last updated 13-Oct-16
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An occasional glance at the obituary column of The Times has suggested to me that the sixties are very unhealthy; I have long thought that it would exasperate me to die before I had written this book, and so it seemed to me that I had better set about it at once. When I have finished it I can face the future with serenity, for I shall have rounded off my life’s work.

W. Somerset Maugham (1874-1965) English novelist and playwright [William Somerset Maugham]
The Summing Up, ch. 3 (1938)
Added on 6-Jul-16 | Last updated 6-Jul-16
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How do you finish them? You finish them. There’s no magic answer, I’m afraid. This is how you do it: you sit down at the keyboard and you put one word after another until it’s done. It’s that easy, and that hard.

Neil Gaiman (b. 1960) British fabulist
“Pens, Rules, Finishing Things, and Why Stephin Merritt is not Grouchy,” blog entry (2 May 2004)
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On finishing stories.
Added on 8-Jul-15 | Last updated 8-Jul-15
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For a thing to remain undone nothing more is needed than to think it done.

Baltasar Gracián y Morales (1601-1658) Spanish Jesuit priest, writer, philosopher
The Art of Worldy Wisdom [Oráculo Manual y Arte de Prudencia], #204 (1647) [tr. Jacobs (1892)]
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Added on 1-Apr-15 | Last updated 24-Jan-20
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‘Where shall I begin, please your Majesty?’ he asked.

‘Begin at the beginning,’ the King said, gravely, ‘and go on till you come to the end: then stop.’

Lewis Carroll (1832-1898) English writer and mathematician [pseud. of Rev. Charles Lutwidge Dodgson]
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, ch. 12 (1865)
Added on 15-Dec-14 | Last updated 15-Dec-14
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More quotes by Carroll, Lewis

Imagine that you are dying. If you had a terminal disease would you finish this book? Why not? The thing that annoys this 10-weeks-to-live self is the thing that is wrong with the book. So change it. Stop arguing with yourself. Change it. See? Easy. And no one had to die.

Anne Enright (b. 1962) Irish writer
In “Ten Rules for Writing Fiction,” The Guardian (20 Feb 2010)
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Added on 26-Jun-14 | Last updated 26-Jun-14
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