15 Kickass Lena Dunham Quotes To Celebrate Her New Book

Lena Dunham’s first book, Not That Kind Of Girl, is out today, and The Frisky staff is excited. If the book is anything like the writing she’s put out into the world so far, we can expect a smart and honest take on experiences that are so wildly universal that we’ll be scratching our heads wondering why nobody’s talked about them before her. What makes Lena’s work so much fun to watch (and read) is that just like the rest of us, she gets insecure sometimes and learns through making mistakes — and she owns up to every minute of it. Here are some insightful, kickass Lena quotes to get you ready for the book:

1. On courage:

“It’s interesting how we often can’t see the ways in which we are being strong — like, you can’t be aware of what you’re doing that’s tough and brave at the time that you’re doing it because if you knew that it was brave, then you’d be scared.”

2. On writing:

“I think if you feel like you were born to write, you probably were. If you’re writing, you’re starting in private. It can really be this amazing, private, freeing experience. Forget that it’s for other people — that comes in later.”

3. On shared experiences:

“I’ve always been someone who feels better, if I see what I’m going through in a movie.”

4. On shut-in life:

“I have a really great private existence, almost more like a memoirist or a columnist would, and less like an actor would. Which I enjoy, because I can’t overstate how much I hate leaving the house.”

5. On narcissism:

“I’ve had moments of deep self-involvement that didn’t come from a place of loving myself but quite the opposite.”

6. On healing through art:

“I had really bad OCD. I was really lonely at school. I felt a lot of shame. Seeing what I thought was people lightening their own load, or lifting their own burdens, by writing about them or singing about them just made the world seem more open.”

7. On sexism in comedy:

“There’s always an article coming out, saying, ‘The new thing is funny women!’”

8. On still being you at the end of the day:

“I still go to a party and say something embarrassing to someone, and then write them a weird e-mail about it the next day, and then write them a text because I think they didn’t get the e-mail. No matter what happens with your level of success, you still have to deal with all the baggage that is yourself.”

9. On self-respect:

“You have to love yourself to love someone who’s going to love you. An attraction to nice people is truly something that comes when you have an attraction to yourself. When you feel a lot of negativity towards yourself, you’re almost sexually attracted to people who are going to reflect that back at you. When you learn to love and appreciate those qualities that you’ve tried so hard to suppress, suddenly that behavior’s just not going to be charming to you anymore.”

10. On the dialogue about “Girls” having an all-white cast:

“I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about [the lack of racial diversity in “Girls”], because the idea that this show was making anyone feel isolated runs counter to its intention. If anything, it was me trying to go, I haven’t seen these people on television, and I want women of this age to feel connected to something…I’m not apologizing for who I decided to write, but I will say the topic of race in television is so criminally underdiscussed that if we had to take one for the team to start that conversation, then I’m happy to do that…I want people to know that I didn’t resent the conversation, I learned from it, and recognized its necessity even when it stung.”

11. On loving your body:

“You know, it gets easier and easier. My fears came true: people called me fat and hideous, and I lived. And now I keep living.”

12. On fashion:

“It is funny when I feel like I am being held to the same standards as some hot female celebrity. I feel like saying: ‘I have made it clear to you that I am not doing that so if you want to put me on the Citizens Arrest page in Us Weekly for wearing shorts on the red carpet, you can go for it – I am just being me.’ So it’s just funny to me, because clearly they haven’t seen the show and they don’t understand what it’s about.”

13. On haters:

“You always imagine that if you see a former bully that you’re going to walk up to them in your slinkiest dress and you’re gonna say ‘oh, you made a mistake.’ But at the end of the day, if you’re satisfied with your own current situation, which I really hope you are, you’re going to feel a kind of pity for someone who felt the need to behave that way and who felt the need to, like, cut you down to size. You’re probably going to see them and feel a deep sympathy and a total non-desire to scream at them. A lot of people hurt other people because they don’t think that they matter, so I try to keep that in mind when I encounter a range of negative personalities…”

14. On feminism:

“Women saying ‘I’m not a feminist’ is my greatest pet peeve. Do you believe that women should be paid the same for doing the same jobs? Do you believe that women should be allowed to leave the house? Do you think that women and men both deserve equal rights? Great, then you’re a feminist. People think there is something taboo about speaking up for feminism. I know for a long time that I was embarrassed to call out misogyny because I was then going to be that complaining girl who can’t let it go. But the fact is, we can’t let it go – not until we feel like we have been heard.”

15. On supporting other women:

“I often feel guilty pointing out behavior in other women that I don’t support. Like somehow, the moment I was pulled from my mother’s severed stomach, a pen was placed in my tiny balled fist and I signed a binding document that says ‘I got all your backs, ladies.’ And the thing is, I do support women, but part of that is being clear about what behaviors aren’t helping the bigger cause [of feminism].”

[Image via AKM-GSI]