Keith Waterhouse

British writer

Keith Spencer Waterhouse (6 February 19294 September 2009) was an English novelist, playwright, screenwriter and journalist. His first novel, Billy Liar, has been adapted into a play, a musical, a film, and a television sitcom.


  • Lying in bed, I abandoned the facts again and was back in Ambrosia.
    • Billy Liar (1959), ch. 1
  • "I turn over a new leaf every day," I said. "But the blots show through."
    • Billy Liar, ch. 11
  • Now, […] the world is beginning to look like what it is—overcrowded, dirty, noisy, smelly, and rapidly running out of resources. We're nearing the end of the rainbow, with not a crock of gold in sight.
    • The Daily Mirror, August 17, 1970, cited from Mondays, Thursdays (London: Michael Joseph, 1976), p. 168-169
  • The 50s face was angry, the 60s face was well-fed, the 70s face was foxy. Perhaps it was the right expression: there was a lot to be wary about.
  • Should not the Society of Indexers be known as Indexers, Society of, The?
    • Bookends (1990), cited from Jeffrey Bernard is Unwell; Mr. And Mrs. Nobody; and, Bookends (Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1992) p. 135
  • Life is a campus: in a Greenwich Village bookstore, looking for a New Yorker collection, I asked of an earnest-looking assistant where I might find the humour section. Peering over her granny glasses, she enquired, "Humour studies would that be, sir?"

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