That's how writing works, at least for me: even the stuff that doesn't work out gets funneled into the stuff that does work out.
In general-like not just in fiction but in life-it doesn't work out well when someone imagines someone else as a manic pixie dream girl or an Edward Cullen or anything other than a full, complex human being. That said, while I've tried to reflect that in my books, I don't think I've always succeeded
Consider in what condition both in body and soul a man should be when he is overtaken by death; and consider the shortness of life, the boundless abyss of time past and future, the feebleness of all matter.
The healthy eye ought to see all visible things and not to say, I wish for green things; for this is the condition of a diseased eye.
Leave other people's mistakes where they lie.
Spend your brief moment according to nature's law, and serenely greet the journey's end as an olive falls when it is ripe, blessing the branch that bare it, and giving thanks to the tree that gave it life.
I can at once become happy anywhere, for he is happy who has found himself a happy lot. In a word, happiness lies all in the functions of reason, in warrantable desires and virtuous practice.
In the case of most pains let this remark of Epicurus aid thee, that the pain is neither intolerable nor everlasting, if thou bear in mind that it has its limits, and if thou addest nothing to it in imagination...
Nothing that goes on in anyone else's mind can harm you.
The whole contains nothing which is not or its advantage; and all natures indeed have this common principle, but the nature of the universe has this principle besides, that it cannot be compelled even by any external cause to generate anything harmful to itself.
Everything is here for a purpose, from horses to vine shoots. What's surprising about that? Even the sun will tell you, "I have a purpose," and the other goods as well.
Accustom yourself not to be disregarding of what someone else has to say: as far as possible enter into the mind of the speaker.
We are the other of the other
Never let the future disturb you. You will meet it, if you have to, with the same weapons of reason which today arm you against the present.
It doesn't hurt me unless I interpret its happening as harmful to me. I can choose not to.
Let there be freedom from perturbations with respect to the things which come from the external cause; and let there be justice in the things done by virtue of the internal cause, that is, let there be movement and action terminating in this, in social acts, for this is according to thy nature.
Consider that everything is opinion, and opinion is in thy power.
Is any man afraid of change? Why what can take place without change? What then is more pleasing or more suitable to the universal nature?
That which comes after ever conforms to that which has gone before.
He who fears death either fears the loss of sensation or a different kind of sensation. But if thou shalt have no sensation, neither wilt thou feel any harm; and if thou shalt acquire another kind of sensation, thou wilt be a different kind of living being and thou wilt not cease to live.
Look within. Within is the fountain of good, and it will ever bubble up, if thou wilt ever dig. Marcus Aureliu
"The robber of your free will," writes Epictetus, "does not exist