Dostoevsky

Dostoevsky goes up to the counter and spends two hours frantically trying to decide what to order. When he finally makes a decision, he sits in a corner and broods for the next several weeks. He is finally arrested for loitering and taken to prison overnight. He fears that he will face execution. He is an idiot.

I wanted to fathom her secrets; I wanted her to come to me and say: “I love you,” and if not that, if that was senseless insanity, then…well, what was there to care about? Did I know what I wanted? I was like one demented: all I wanted was to be near her, in the halo of her glory, in her radiance, always, for ever, all my life.
—  Fyodor Dostoevsky, The Gambler
Where is it I’ve read that someone condemned to death says or thinks, an hour before his death, that if he had to live on some high rock, on such a narrow ledge that he’d only room to stand, and the ocean, everlasting darkness, everlasting solitude, everlasting tempest around him, if he had to remain standing on a square yard of space all his life, a thousand years, eternity, it were better to live so than to die at once. Only to live, to live and live! Life, whatever it may be!
—  Fyodor Dostoevsky, Crime and Punishment.
The world says: “You have needs – satisfy them. You have as much right as the rich and the mighty. Don’t hesitate to satisfy your needs; indeed, expand your needs and demand more.” This is the worldly doctrine of today. And they believe that this is freedom. The result for the rich is isolation and suicide, for the poor, envy and murder.
—  Fyodor Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov 
God is necessary, and therefore must exist.”
“Well, that’s wonderful.”
“But I know that he does not and cannot exist.”
“That’s more like it.”
“Don’t you understand that a man with these two thoughts cannot go on living?
—  Fyodor Dostoevsky, Demons
The novels of Dostoevsky are seething whirlpools, gyrating sandstorms, waterspouts which hiss and boil and suck us in. They are composed purely and wholly of the stuff of the soul. Against our wills we are drawn in, whirled round, blinded, suffocated, and at the same time filled with a giddy rapture.
—  Virginia Woolf on Dostoevsky