I had a lot of survival jobs. One was for the Witty Ditty singing-telegram company. I was in the red-and-white stripes with the straw boater hat and kazoo. Balloons. Even when youre sleeping on a friends couch you have to pay some kind of rent.

Dont try to guess what it is people want and give it to them. Dont ask for a show of hands. Try your best to write what you like what you think your friends would like and what you think your father would like and then cross your fingers… The most valuable thing you have is your own voice.

When I write something I want the best director to direct it. And thats not going to be me. So when David Fincher comes along and wants to direct The Social Network when Bennett Miller comes along and wants to direct Moneyball or when Danny Boyle wants to direct Jobs? Hallelujah. I want them directing it.

Theres a great tradition in storytelling thats thousands of years old telling stories about kings and their palaces and thats really what I wanted to do.

Not all paintings are abstract theyre not all Jackson Pollock. Theres value in a photograph of a man alone on a boat at sea and there is value in painting of a man alone on a boat at sea. In the painting the painting has more freedom to express an idea more latitude in being able to elicit certain emotion.

Its populated by people who by and large have terrific communication skills. Every day is an extraordinary day. For me it was just a great area for storytelling.

I spend most of my days pacing around muttering that I have no ideas feeling like Im walking a plank.

The Internet in general I find troubling. The anonymity has made us all meaner and dumber. This thing that was supposed to bring us closer together I see it doing the opposite.

Dont ever forget that a small group of thoughtful people can change the world its the only thing that ever has.

Its nice that HBO is in business with the audience and not with the advertisers. Theres a difference.

My parents took me to see plays starting from when I was very little. Oftentimes I was too young to understand. I dont know what my parents were thinking – Whos Afraid of Virginia Woolf when I was eight years old that kind of thing. So lots of times I didnt understand what was going on but I just loved …

The rules are all in a sixty-four-page pamphlet by Aristotle called Poetics. It was written almost three thousand years ago but I promise you if something is wrong with what youre writing youve probably broken one of Aristotles rules.

If the characters on The West Wing were watching a TV show wherein a character like Trump was leading in the polls they wouldnt find it believable.

I consider plot a necessary intrusion on what I really want to do which is write snappy dialogue.

With The Social Network I got into it at first because frankly I thought there was a cool courtroom drama to be had with the intellectual properties. And then what further drew me in was that the most extraordinary social networking device ever created was created by the worlds most antisocial person. I liked that story.

I have all of the Apple products. Everything Ive ever written Ive written on a Mac. My first computer my roommates and I chipped in and we got that first Macintosh – 128K. It had as much memory as a greeting card that plays music.

I love writing but hate starting. The page is awfully white and it says You may have fooled some of the people some of the time but those days are over giftless. Im not your agent and Im not your mommy really dont. Ill go peaceable-like.

I cant remember my dreams more than a couple of seconds after I wake up. Its frustrating because sometimes I dream that Im watching a really good movie.

Well I must tell you I write the scripts very close to the bone. So Im writing episode seven now and couldnt tell you what happens in episode eight.

Ive always thought that there is a great female James Bond movie to be done. Im not literally calling her Jane Bond I mean but a female secret agent.

Ive got plenty of quirks. I go to an office early in the morning. Early in the morning is really good writing time. I take anywhere between six to eight showers a day. Im not exaggerating. Im not a germaphobe: its all about a fresh start.

As long as you keep one foot in the real world while the other foots in a fairy tale that fairy tale is going to seem kind of attainable.

You know one of the things I like about this world or at least I like about the way were presenting this world is these issues are terribly complicated – not nearly as black and white as were led to believe.

Good writers borrow from other writers. Great writers steal from them outright.

I am truly at my happiest not when I am writing an aria for an actor or making a grand political or social point. I am at my happiest when Ive figured out a fun way for somebody to slip on a banana peel.