black Corona typewriter on brown wood planksPhoto Credit: Patrick Fore

185 Salient Quotes About Writing

Welcome to our curated collection of quotes about writing, writing advice, and the writing process. We hope you enjoy pondering them, and please share, and please link back to us. Wishing you a productive day - writing or re-writing. (-:

Quote: Writing crystallizes thought and thought produces action. by author Paul J. Meyer overlaid on photo of white ceramic pencil organizer on top of stack of books
Photo Credit: Debby Hudson

Writing crystallizes thought and thought produces action.


Quote: I do not over-intellectualise the production process. I try to keep it simple: Tell the damned story. by author Tom Clancy overlaid on photo of white and blue ice in water
Photo Credit: Birger Strahl

I do not over-intellectualise the production process. I try to keep it simple: Tell the damned story.


Quote: If you want to change the world, pick up your pen and write. by author Martin Luther overlaid on photo of person writing on white paper
Photo Credit: Eugene Chystiakov

If you want to change the world, pick up your pen and write.


Quote: One day I will find the right words, and they will be simple. by author Jack Kerouac overlaid on photo of white ceramic pencil organizer on top of stack of books
Photo Credit: Debby Hudson

One day I will find the right words, and they will be simple.



Longer Version/[Notes]:

The scariest moment is always just before you start. After that, things can only get better.


Quote: How vain it is to sit down to write when you have not stood up to live. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of time lapse photography of fire
Photo Credit: Cullan Smith

How vain it is to sit down to write when you have not stood up to live.


Quote: We are all apprentices in a craft where no one ever becomes a master. by author Ernest Hemingway overlaid on photo of brown pencil on white surface
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

We are all apprentices in a craft where no one ever becomes a master.


Quote: The most beautiful things are those that madness prompts and reason writes. by author Andre Gide overlaid on photo of person writing on white paper
Photo Credit: Eugene Chystiakov

The most beautiful things are those that madness prompts and reason writes.


Quote: Words create worlds. by author Pierre du Plessis overlaid on photo of white printer paper
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

Words create worlds.


Quote: I write not because I want to but because I am destined to. by author Jules Haigler overlaid on photo of black and silver retractable pen on blank book
Photo Credit: Mike Tinnion

I write not because I want to but because I am destined to.


Quote: Writing starts with living. by author L. L. Barkat overlaid on photo of person holding pencil near laptop computer
Photo Credit: Scott Graham

Writing starts with living.


Quote: My most important advice to writers is butt in chair! by author Gray Basnight overlaid on photo of white spiral notebook on black wooden table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

My most important advice to writers is butt in chair!


Quote: An aspiring writer should write one time and edit ten times. by author Amit Kalantri overlaid on photo of person writing on white paper
Photo Credit: Eugene Chystiakov

An aspiring writer should write one time and edit ten times.


Quote: Only bad writers think that their work is really good. by author Anne Enright overlaid on photo of silver click pen on white paper
Photo Credit: R Mo

Only bad writers think that their work is really good.


Quote: Perfectionism is the voice of the oppressor. by author Anne Lamott overlaid on photo of white spiral notebook on black wooden table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

Perfectionism is the voice of the oppressor.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

Perfectionism is the voice of the oppressor, the enemy of the people. It will keep you cramped and insane your whole life Besides, perfectionism will ruin your writing, blocking inventiveness and playfulness and life force (these are words we are allowed to use in California).


Quote: Keep your hands moving. Writing is rewriting. by author August Wilson overlaid on photo of black and silver retractable pen on blank book
Photo Credit: Mike Tinnion

Keep your hands moving. Writing is rewriting.


Quote: There is no perfect time to write. There's only now. by author Barbara Kingsolver overlaid on photo of notebook on table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

There is no perfect time to write. There's only now.


Quote: Get into the scene late, get out of the scene early. by author David Mamet overlaid on photo of silver click pen on white paper
Photo Credit: R Mo

Get into the scene late, get out of the scene early.


Quote: Writing well is the best revenge. by author Dorothy Parker overlaid on photo of photo of author Dorothy Parker with quote

Writing well is the best revenge.


Quote: The best writing is rewriting. by author E. B. White overlaid on photo of photo of author E. B. White with quote

The best writing is rewriting.


Quote: Writing is an act of faith, not a trick of grammar. by author E. B. White overlaid on photo of photo of author E. B. White with quote

Writing is an act of faith, not a trick of grammar.


Quote: Each writer is born with a repertory company in his head. by author Gore Vidal overlaid on photo of man holding two swords while standing in front of brown gate
Photo Credit: Darinka Kievskaya

Each writer is born with a repertory company in his head.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

Each writer is born with a repertory company in his head. Shakespeare has perhaps 20 players. ... I have 10 or so, and thats a lot. As you get older, you become more skillful at casting them.


Quote: Any writer worth his salt writes to please himself. by author Harper Lee overlaid on photo of Magic Keyboard beside mug and click pen
Photo Credit: Leone Venter

Any writer worth his salt writes to please himself.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

Any writer worth his salt writes to please himself...It's a self-exploratory operation that is endless. An exorcism of not necessarily his demon, but of his divine discontent.


Quote: Writers who don't write weekly, write weakly. by author James Clear overlaid on photo of Magic Keyboard beside mug and click pen
Photo Credit: Leone Venter

Writers who don't write weekly, write weakly.


Quote: Writing makes you more human. by author John Updike overlaid on photo of person holding brown pencil
Photo Credit: Neven Krcmarek

Writing makes you more human.


Quote: Writing is nothing more than a guided dream. by author Jorge Luis Borges overlaid on photo of white spiral notebook on black wooden table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

Writing is nothing more than a guided dream.


Quote: The great art of writing is knowing when to stop. by author Josh Billings overlaid on photo of notebook on table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

The great art of writing is knowing when to stop.


Quote: Writing is a way of talking without being interrupted. by author Jules Renard overlaid on photo of notebook on table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

Writing is a way of talking without being interrupted.


Quote: About clichés. Avoid them like the plague. by author Khaled Hosseini overlaid on photo of notebook on table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

About clichés. Avoid them like the plague.


Quote: There is no good writing; there is only good rewriting. by author Louis D. Brandeis overlaid on photo of coffee latte near white wireless keyboard and Apple EarPods on the table photography
Photo Credit: Lukas Blazek

There is no good writing; there is only good rewriting.


Quote: You have to write the book that wants to be written. by author Madeleine L'Engle overlaid on photo of silver click pen on white paper
Photo Credit: R Mo

You have to write the book that wants to be written.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

You have to write the book that wants to be written. And if the book will be too difficult for grown-ups, then you write it for children.


Quote: If I waited for perfection, I would never write a word. by author Margaret Atwood overlaid on photo of black and silver retractable pen on blank book
Photo Credit: Mike Tinnion

If I waited for perfection, I would never write a word.


Quote: Look for verbs of muscle, adjectives of exactitude. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of black and silver retractable pen on blank book
Photo Credit: Mike Tinnion

Look for verbs of muscle, adjectives of exactitude.


Quote: My pen beats faster as I write with my heart. by author Munia Khan overlaid on photo of Magic Keyboard beside mug and click pen
Photo Credit: Leone Venter

My pen beats faster as I write with my heart.


Quote: Breathe in experience, breathe out poetry. by author Muriel Rukeyser overlaid on photo of white lead pencil on surface
Photo Credit: Yoann Siloine

Breathe in experience, breathe out poetry.


Quote: Writing books is the closest men ever come to childbearing. by author Norman Mailer overlaid on photo of coffee latte near white wireless keyboard and Apple EarPods on the table photography
Photo Credit: Lukas Blazek

Writing books is the closest men ever come to childbearing.


Quote: Content, in writing, is supreme. by author Ogwo David Emenike overlaid on photo of Magic Keyboard beside mug and click pen
Photo Credit: Leone Venter

Content, in writing, is supreme.


Quote: Tell a story in fewer and simpler words. by author Pawan Mishra overlaid on photo of person holding pencil near laptop computer
Photo Credit: Scott Graham

Tell a story in fewer and simpler words.


Quote: Each book starts from ashes. by author Philip Roth overlaid on photo of person holding brown pencil
Photo Credit: Neven Krcmarek

Each book starts from ashes.


Quote: The road to hell is paved with works-in-progress. by author Philip Roth overlaid on photo of black and silver retractable pen on blank book
Photo Credit: Mike Tinnion

The road to hell is paved with works-in-progress.


Quote: Reading is probably what leads most writers to writing. by author Richard Ford overlaid on photo of notebook on table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

Reading is probably what leads most writers to writing.


Quote: Good writing is rewriting. by author Truman Capote overlaid on photo of shallow focus photography of fountain pen
Photo Credit: John Jennings

Good writing is rewriting.


Quote: Writing is the supreme solace. by author William Somerset Maugham overlaid on photo of notebook on table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

Writing is the supreme solace.


Quote: Hard writing makes easy reading. by author Wallace Stegner overlaid on photo of white ceramic pencil organizer on top of stack of books
Photo Credit: Debby Hudson

Hard writing makes easy reading.


Quote: Read, read read. Read everything. by author William Faulkner overlaid on photo of white ceramic pencil organizer on top of stack of books
Photo Credit: Debby Hudson

Read, read read. Read everything.


Quote: Writing is exposing yourself to strangers. by author Bangambiki Habyarimana overlaid on photo of person holding brown pencil
Photo Credit: Neven Krcmarek

Writing is exposing yourself to strangers.


Quote: The core of my writing is not art but truth. by author Philip K. Dick overlaid on photo of black and silver retractable pen on blank book
Photo Credit: Mike Tinnion

The core of my writing is not art but truth.


Quote: When the lyrical muse sings the creative pen dances. by author Aberjhani overlaid on photo of white spiral notebook on black wooden table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

When the lyrical muse sings the creative pen dances.


Quote: Just keep the stylus moving. by author Bert McCoy overlaid on photo of notebook on table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

Just keep the stylus moving.


Quote: Be prepared to work hard to be a writer. by author Sandra Brown overlaid on photo of white spiral notebook on black wooden table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

Be prepared to work hard to be a writer.


Quote: The writer's duty is to keep on writing. by author William Styron overlaid on photo of person holding pencil near laptop computer
Photo Credit: Scott Graham

The writer's duty is to keep on writing.


Quote: The poet doesn't invent. He listens. by author Jean Cocteau overlaid on photo of Magic Keyboard beside mug and click pen
Photo Credit: Leone Venter

The poet doesn't invent. He listens.


Quote: Good writing is always new. by author A. S. Byatt overlaid on photo of white spiral notebook on black wooden table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

Good writing is always new.


Quote: Go where the pain is, go where the pleasure is. by author Anne Rice overlaid on photo of coffee latte near white wireless keyboard and Apple EarPods on the table photography
Photo Credit: Lukas Blazek

Go where the pain is, go where the pleasure is.


Quote: Writing is a lonely profession. by author Bob Mayer overlaid on photo of white lead pencil on surface
Photo Credit: Yoann Siloine

Writing is a lonely profession.


Quote: The book doesn't end when you finish writing it. by author Claire Tomalin overlaid on photo of Magic Keyboard beside mug and click pen
Photo Credit: Leone Venter

The book doesn't end when you finish writing it.


Quote: Good writing is everything. by author Corey Stoll overlaid on photo of white lead pencil on surface
Photo Credit: Yoann Siloine

Good writing is everything.


Quote: So what? All writers are lunatics! by author Cornelia Funke overlaid on photo of photo of author Cornelia Funke with quote

So what? All writers are lunatics!


Quote: If it sounds like writing, I rewrite it. by author Elmore Leonard overlaid on photo of shallow focus photography of fountain pen
Photo Credit: John Jennings

If it sounds like writing, I rewrite it.


Quote: Writing is a delicious agony. by author Gwendolyn Brooks overlaid on photo of person holding pencil near laptop computer
Photo Credit: Scott Graham

Writing is a delicious agony.


Quote: There is a kind of mysticism to writing. by author Irvine Welsh overlaid on photo of white spiral notebook on black wooden table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

There is a kind of mysticism to writing.


Quote: I write to be the characters that I am not. by author Joss Whedon overlaid on photo of white spiral notebook on black wooden table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

I write to be the characters that I am not.


Quote: When in doubt, blow something up. by author J. Michael Straczynski overlaid on photo of white printer paper
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

When in doubt, blow something up.


Quote: Writing is the process of asking the next logical question. by author J. Michael Straczynski overlaid on photo of white spiral notebook on black wooden table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

Writing is the process of asking the next logical question.


Quote: Be unpredictable, Be Real, Be Interesting. Tell a good story. by author James Dashner overlaid on photo of silver click pen on white paper
Photo Credit: R Mo

Be unpredictable, Be Real, Be Interesting. Tell a good story.


Quote: Good writing does not come from verbiage but from words. by author Jeff Lindsay overlaid on photo of silver click pen on white paper
Photo Credit: R Mo

Good writing does not come from verbiage but from words.


Quote: Writing is inherently scary. by author Jonathan Galassi overlaid on photo of person holding brown pencil
Photo Credit: Neven Krcmarek

Writing is inherently scary.


Quote: Writing is a conviction before it is a craft. by author Joshua Cohen overlaid on photo of black and silver retractable pen on blank book
Photo Credit: Mike Tinnion

Writing is a conviction before it is a craft.


Quote: Writing stories is the habit of lying put to good use. by author Julianna Baggott overlaid on photo of coffee latte near white wireless keyboard and Apple EarPods on the table photography
Photo Credit: Lukas Blazek

Writing stories is the habit of lying put to good use.


Quote: Give me good writing, and I'll play it all day. by author Jeff Daniels overlaid on photo of person holding brown pencil
Photo Credit: Neven Krcmarek

Give me good writing, and I'll play it all day.


Quote: Writing is showbusiness for shy people. That's how I see it. by author Lee Child overlaid on photo of Magic Keyboard beside mug and click pen
Photo Credit: Leone Venter

Writing is showbusiness for shy people. That's how I see it.


Quote: Don't take anyone's writing advice too seriously. by author Lev Grossman overlaid on photo of silver click pen on white paper
Photo Credit: R Mo

Don't take anyone's writing advice too seriously.


Quote: Writing is a form of licensed madness. by author Mal Peet overlaid on photo of white ceramic pencil organizer on top of stack of books
Photo Credit: Debby Hudson

Writing is a form of licensed madness.


Quote: Being a writer is not the point. Writing is. by author Mohsin Hamid overlaid on photo of coffee latte near white wireless keyboard and Apple EarPods on the table photography
Photo Credit: Lukas Blazek

Being a writer is not the point. Writing is.


Quote: Every writer has to find their own way into writing. by author Margaret Mahy overlaid on photo of white ceramic pencil organizer on top of stack of books
Photo Credit: Debby Hudson

Every writer has to find their own way into writing.


Quote: Writing is hard, hard work; that's just the way it is. by author Marissa Moss overlaid on photo of white ceramic pencil organizer on top of stack of books
Photo Credit: Debby Hudson

Writing is hard, hard work; that's just the way it is.


Quote: Writing is my salvation. If I didn't write, what would I do? by author Maxine Kumin overlaid on photo of coffee latte near white wireless keyboard and Apple EarPods on the table photography
Photo Credit: Lukas Blazek

Writing is my salvation. If I didn't write, what would I do?


Quote: Writing is rewriting what you have rewritten. by author Paul Engle overlaid on photo of black and silver retractable pen on blank book
Photo Credit: Mike Tinnion

Writing is rewriting what you have rewritten.


Quote: Best advice on writing I've ever received. Finish. by author Peter Mayle overlaid on photo of white ceramic pencil organizer on top of stack of books
Photo Credit: Debby Hudson

Best advice on writing I've ever received. Finish.


Quote: Writing is the beast unto itself. by author Omar Epps overlaid on photo of white lead pencil on surface
Photo Credit: Yoann Siloine

Writing is the beast unto itself.


Quote: Creative writing and literacy go hand and hand. by author Rita Dove overlaid on photo of white ceramic pencil organizer on top of stack of books
Photo Credit: Debby Hudson

Creative writing and literacy go hand and hand.


Quote: What writing does is to reveal. by author Rita Dove overlaid on photo of person holding pencil near laptop computer
Photo Credit: Scott Graham

What writing does is to reveal.


Quote: Writing is an incessant process of discovery. by author Robert Hass overlaid on photo of notebook on table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

Writing is an incessant process of discovery.


Quote: All good writing comes out of aloneness. by author Sam Shepard overlaid on photo of shallow focus photography of fountain pen
Photo Credit: John Jennings

All good writing comes out of aloneness.


Quote: Writing is a lonely business. by author Sherman Alexie overlaid on photo of green and white ceramic figurine
Photo Credit: Mathieu Stern

Writing is a lonely business.


Quote: Writing is an antidote for loneliness. by author Steven Berkoff overlaid on photo of person cooking on seashore
Photo Credit: Liam Simpson

Writing is an antidote for loneliness.


Quote: Writing is a struggle no matter what the genre. by author Susan Wiggs overlaid on photo of person holding pencil near laptop computer
Photo Credit: Scott Graham

Writing is a struggle no matter what the genre.


Quote: Writing is a communication. by author Theodore Sturgeon overlaid on photo of person holding brown pencil
Photo Credit: Neven Krcmarek

Writing is a communication.


Quote: Few writers are willing to admit writing is autobiographical. by author Terry McMillan overlaid on photo of Magic Keyboard beside mug and click pen
Photo Credit: Leone Venter

Few writers are willing to admit writing is autobiographical.


Quote: Omit needless words. by author William Strunk, Jr.  overlaid on photo of white lead pencil on surface
Photo Credit: Yoann Siloine

Omit needless words.


Quote: Vigorous writing is concise. by author William Strunk, Jr.  overlaid on photo of person holding brown pencil
Photo Credit: Neven Krcmarek

Vigorous writing is concise.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

Vigorous writing is concise. A sentence should contain no unnecessary words, a paragraph no unnecessary sentences, for the same reason that a drawing should have no unnecessary lines and a machine no unnecessary parts.


Quote: Getting even is one reason for writing. by author William H. Gass overlaid on photo of notebook on table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

Getting even is one reason for writing.


Quote: Writing is 1 percent inspiration, and 99 percent elimination. by author Louise Brooks overlaid on photo of silver click pen on white paper
Photo Credit: R Mo

Writing is 1 percent inspiration, and 99 percent elimination.


Quote: Writing is easy. Writing well is hard work. by author Amy Joy overlaid on photo of coffee latte near white wireless keyboard and Apple EarPods on the table photography
Photo Credit: Lukas Blazek

Writing is easy. Writing well is hard work.


Quote: Anyone who says writing is easy isn't doing it right. by author Amy Joy overlaid on photo of white ceramic pencil organizer on top of stack of books
Photo Credit: Debby Hudson

Anyone who says writing is easy isn't doing it right.


Quote: Endings are the embryos of new beginnings. by author Gina Greenlee overlaid on photo of black and silver retractable pen on blank book
Photo Credit: Mike Tinnion

Endings are the embryos of new beginnings.


Quote: Writing heals my heart like no pill ever could. by author Rob Bignell overlaid on photo of white ceramic pencil organizer on top of stack of books
Photo Credit: Debby Hudson

Writing heals my heart like no pill ever could.


Quote: Poetic license is not a license to scribe recklessly. by author C. Kennedy overlaid on photo of notebook on table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

Poetic license is not a license to scribe recklessly.


Quote: Writing fiction is fundamentally an irrational act. by author Dale Peck overlaid on photo of Magic Keyboard beside mug and click pen
Photo Credit: Leone Venter

Writing fiction is fundamentally an irrational act.


Quote: Modernity of form is the style of old fogies yet to be. by author Anthony Marais overlaid on photo of white ceramic pencil organizer on top of stack of books
Photo Credit: Debby Hudson

Modernity of form is the style of old fogies yet to be.


Quote: Writing is a process, a journey into memory and the soul. by author Isabel Allende overlaid on photo of adult black and tan dachshund
Photo Credit: Erda Estremera

Writing is a process, a journey into memory and the soul.


Quote: If you start with a bang, you won't end with a whimper. by author T. S. Eliot overlaid on photo of two women walking on bridge during daytime
Photo Credit: Julia Caesar

If you start with a bang, you won't end with a whimper.


Quote: Knowledge is the foundation and source of good writing. by author Horace overlaid on photo of white ceramic pencil organizer on top of stack of books
Photo Credit: Debby Hudson

Knowledge is the foundation and source of good writing.


Quote: Write while the heat is in you. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of group of people sitting on ground with bonfire during daytime
Photo Credit: Ball Park Brand

Write while the heat is in you.


Quote: Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work. by author Stephen King overlaid on photo of person writing on white paper
Photo Credit: Eugene Chystiakov

Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work.


Quote: Write drunk; edit sober. by author Ernest Hemingway overlaid on photo of shallow focus photography of fountain pen
Photo Credit: John Jennings

Write drunk; edit sober.


Quote: In order to write about life first you must live it. by author Ernest Hemingway overlaid on photo of black and silver retractable pen on blank book
Photo Credit: Mike Tinnion

In order to write about life first you must live it.


Quote: You can make anything by writing. by author C. S. Lewis overlaid on photo of photo of author C. S. Lewis with quote

You can make anything by writing.


Quote: A problem with a piece of writing often clarifies itself if you go for a long walk. by author Helen Dunmore overlaid on photo of creative guy at desk
Photo Credit: Thomas Franke

A problem with a piece of writing often clarifies itself if you go for a long walk.


Quote: Truth that is naked is the most beautiful, and the simpler its expression the deeper is the impression it makes. by author Arthur Schopenhauer overlaid on photo of red flowers with water droplets
Photo Credit: Leonardo Corral

Truth that is naked is the most beautiful, and the simpler its expression the deeper is the impression it makes.


Quote: Write to please just one person. If you open a window and make love to the world, so to speak, your story will get pneumonia. by author Kurt Vonnegut overlaid on photo of aerial photography of mountain range covered with snow under white and blue sky at daytime
Photo Credit: Rohit Tandon

Write to please just one person. If you open a window and make love to the world, so to speak, your story will get pneumonia.


Quote: If you write what you yourself sincerely think and feel and are interested in, the chances are very high that you will interest other people as well. by author Rachel Carson overlaid on photo of photo of author Rachel Carson with quote

If you write what you yourself sincerely think and feel and are interested in, the chances are very high that you will interest other people as well.


Quote: A short story must have a single mood and every sentence must build towards it. by author Edgar Allan Poe overlaid on photo of fountain pen on spiral book
Photo Credit: Aaron Burden

A short story must have a single mood and every sentence must build towards it.


Quote: Find out the reason that commands you to write; see whether it has spread its roots into the very depth of your heart; confess to yourself you would have to die if you were forbidden to write. by author Rainer Maria Rilke overlaid on photo of red white and black butterfly on green leaf
Photo Credit: Aaron Burden

Find out the reason that commands you to write; see whether it has spread its roots into the very depth of your heart; confess to yourself you would have to die if you were forbidden to write.


Quote: It is the writer who might catch the imagination of young people, and plant a seed that will flower and come to fruition. by author Isaac Asimov overlaid on photo of white flowers
Photo Credit: Veri Ivanova

It is the writer who might catch the imagination of young people, and plant a seed that will flower and come to fruition.


Quote: Everybody else is working to change, persuade, tempt and control them. The best readers come to fiction to be free of all that noise. by author Philip Roth overlaid on photo of stars across the sky view at the desert
Photo Credit: Jean Carlo Emer

Everybody else is working to change, persuade, tempt and control them. The best readers come to fiction to be free of all that noise.


Quote: A writer without interest or sympathy for the foibles of his fellow man is not conceivable as a writer. by author Joseph Conrad overlaid on photo of brown pencil on white surface
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

A writer without interest or sympathy for the foibles of his fellow man is not conceivable as a writer.


Quote: Writing is a struggle against silence. by author Carlos Fuentes overlaid on photo of person holding pencil near laptop computer
Photo Credit: Scott Graham

Writing is a struggle against silence.


Quote: The work never matches the dream of perfection the artist has to start with. by author William Faulkner overlaid on photo of sunset
Photo Credit: DiscoverQuotes Staff

The work never matches the dream of perfection the artist has to start with.


Quote: I am irritated by my own writing. I am like a violinist whose ear is true, but whose fingers refuse to reproduce precisely the sound he hears within. by author Gustave Flaubert overlaid on photo of brown desert under sunny sky
Photo Credit: Pat Whelen

I am irritated by my own writing. I am like a violinist whose ear is true, but whose fingers refuse to reproduce precisely the sound he hears within.


Quote: A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people. by author Thomas Mann overlaid on photo of man sitting on concrete brick with opened laptop on his lap
Photo Credit: Avi Richards

A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.


Quote: The first draft is just you telling yourself the story. by author Terry Pratchett overlaid on photo of coffee latte near white wireless keyboard and Apple EarPods on the table photography
Photo Credit: Lukas Blazek

The first draft is just you telling yourself the story.


Quote: Your word is the power that you have to create; it is a gift. by author Don Miguel Ruiz overlaid on photo of purple, white, and pink floral painting
Photo Credit: Annie Spratt

Your word is the power that you have to create; it is a gift.


Quote: Colors fade, temples crumble, empires fall, but wise words endure. by author Edward Thorndike overlaid on photo of Magic Keyboard beside mug and click pen
Photo Credit: Leone Venter

Colors fade, temples crumble, empires fall, but wise words endure.


Quote: Any word you have to hunt for in a thesaurus is the wrong word. There are no exceptions to this rule. by author Stephen King overlaid on photo of yellow sunflower in close up photography
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

Any word you have to hunt for in a thesaurus is the wrong word. There are no exceptions to this rule.


Quote: First, find out what your hero wants, then just follow him. by author Ray Bradbury overlaid on photo of green textile
Photo Credit: Sharon McCutcheon

First, find out what your hero wants, then just follow him.


Quote: Sleep on your writing; take a walk over it; scrutinize it of a morning; review it of an afternoon; digest it after a meal; let it sleep in your drawer a twelvemonth; never venture a whisper about it to your friend, if he be an author especially. by author Amos Bronson Alcott overlaid on photo of photo of author Amos Bronson Alcott with quote

Sleep on your writing; take a walk over it; scrutinize it of a morning; review it of an afternoon; digest it after a meal; let it sleep in your drawer a twelvemonth; never venture a whisper about it to your friend, if he be an author especially.


When your story is ready for rewrite, cut it to the bone. Get rid of every ounce of excess fat. This is going to hurt; revising a story down to the bare essentials is always a little like murdering children, but it must be done.


Quote: After nourishment, shelter and companionship, stories are the thing we need most in the world. by author Philip Pullman overlaid on photo of person writing on white paper
Photo Credit: Eugene Chystiakov

After nourishment, shelter and companionship, stories are the thing we need most in the world.


Quote: Style means the right word. The rest matters little. by author Jules Renard overlaid on photo of white spiral notebook on black wooden table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

Style means the right word. The rest matters little.


Quote: When you write a book, you spend day after day scanning and identifying the trees. When you're done, you have to step back and look at the forest. by author Stephen King overlaid on photo of pink and blue sky with moon
Photo Credit: J Lee

When you write a book, you spend day after day scanning and identifying the trees. When you're done, you have to step back and look at the forest.


Quote: Stories may well be lies, but they are good lies that say true things, and which can sometimes pay the rent. by author Neil Gaiman overlaid on photo of creative guy at desk
Photo Credit: Thomas Franke

Stories may well be lies, but they are good lies that say true things, and which can sometimes pay the rent.


Quote: The business of the novelist is not to relate great events, but to make small ones interesting. by author Arthur Schopenhauer overlaid on photo of person in black long sleeve shirt using brown and white rotary phone
Photo Credit: NeONBRAND

The business of the novelist is not to relate great events, but to make small ones interesting.


Quote: As a writer, you should not judge, you should understand. by author Ernest Hemingway overlaid on photo of black and silver retractable pen on blank book
Photo Credit: Mike Tinnion

As a writer, you should not judge, you should understand.


Quote: A person is a fool to become a writer. His only compensation is absolute freedom. He has no master except his own soul, and that, I am sure, is why he does it. by author Roald Dahl overlaid on photo of person using laptop computer
Photo Credit: Christin Hume

A person is a fool to become a writer. His only compensation is absolute freedom. He has no master except his own soul, and that, I am sure, is why he does it.


Quote: Whether a character in your novel is full of choler, bile, phlegm, blood or plain old buffalo chips, the fire of life is in there, too, as long as that character lives. by author James Alexander Thom overlaid on photo of assorted-color beach houses
Photo Credit: Arno Smit

Whether a character in your novel is full of choler, bile, phlegm, blood or plain old buffalo chips, the fire of life is in there, too, as long as that character lives.


Quote: No author dislikes to be edited as much as he dislikes not to be published. by author Russell Lynes overlaid on photo of person writing on white paper
Photo Credit: Eugene Chystiakov

No author dislikes to be edited as much as he dislikes not to be published.


Quote: Writing is like sex. First you do it for love, then you do it for your friends, and then you do it for money. by author Virginia Woolf overlaid on photo of pendant LED bulb
Photo Credit: Felix Steininger

Writing is like sex. First you do it for love, then you do it for your friends, and then you do it for money.


Quote: Many people hear voices when no one is there. Some of them are called mad and are shut up in rooms where they stare at the walls all day. Others are called writers and they do pretty much the same thing. by author Margaret Chittenden overlaid on photo of pink petaled flower
Photo Credit: Han Chenxu

Many people hear voices when no one is there. Some of them are called mad and are shut up in rooms where they stare at the walls all day. Others are called writers and they do pretty much the same thing.


Quote: To survive, you must tell stories. by author Umberto Eco overlaid on photo of brown trees under blue sky during daytime
Photo Credit: Jr. Farren

To survive, you must tell stories.


Quote: To produce a mighty book, you must choose a mighty theme. by author Herman Melville overlaid on photo of silver click pen on white paper
Photo Credit: R Mo

To produce a mighty book, you must choose a mighty theme.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

To produce a mighty book, you must choose a mighty theme. No great and enduring volume can ever be written on the flea, though many there be that have tried it.


Quote: Tears are words that need to be written. by author Paulo Coelho overlaid on photo of person holding brown pencil
Photo Credit: Neven Krcmarek

Tears are words that need to be written.


Quote: The purpose of a writer is to keep civilization from destroying itself. by author Albert Camus overlaid on photo of woman standing on forest
Photo Credit: Tobias Hort-Giess

The purpose of a writer is to keep civilization from destroying itself.


Quote: Lock up your libraries if you like; but there is no gate, no lock, no bolt that you can set upon the freedom of my mind. by author Virginia Woolf overlaid on photo of woman signing on white printer paper beside woman about to touch the documents
Photo Credit: Gabrielle Henderson

Lock up your libraries if you like; but there is no gate, no lock, no bolt that you can set upon the freedom of my mind.


Quote: If I had more time, I would have written a shorter letter. by author Blaise Pascal overlaid on photo of white ceramic pencil organizer on top of stack of books
Photo Credit: Debby Hudson

If I had more time, I would have written a shorter letter.


Quote: Writing, like life itself, is a voyage of discovery. by author Henry Miller overlaid on photo of coffee latte near white wireless keyboard and Apple EarPods on the table photography
Photo Credit: Lukas Blazek

Writing, like life itself, is a voyage of discovery.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

Writing, like life itself, is a voyage of discovery. The adventure is a metaphysical one: it is a way of approaching life indirectly, of acquiring a total rather than a partial view of the universe. The writer lives between the upper and lower worlds: he takes the path in order eventually to become the path himself.


Quote: Forget all the rules. Forget about being published. Write for yourself and celebrate writing. by author Melinda Haynes overlaid on photo of person writing on white paper
Photo Credit: Eugene Chystiakov

Forget all the rules. Forget about being published. Write for yourself and celebrate writing.


Quote: You go where the story leads you. by author Stephen King overlaid on photo of Magic Keyboard beside mug and click pen
Photo Credit: Leone Venter

You go where the story leads you.


Quote: Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on. by author Louis L'Amour overlaid on photo of person in black long sleeve shirt using brown and white rotary phone
Photo Credit: NeONBRAND

Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on.


Quote: A writer is a world trapped in a person. by author Victor Hugo overlaid on photo of landscape photography of mountain
Photo Credit: Chan Hoi

A writer is a world trapped in a person.


Quote: Writing is its own reward. by author Henry Miller overlaid on photo of person holding pencil near laptop computer
Photo Credit: Scott Graham

Writing is its own reward.


Quote: Good fiction's job is to comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable. by author David Foster Wallace overlaid on photo of woman in striped shirt sitting on bed while writing
Photo Credit: Kinga Cichewicz

Good fiction's job is to comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable.


Quote: All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence that you know. by author Ernest Hemingway overlaid on photo of pendant LED bulb
Photo Credit: Felix Steininger

All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence that you know.


Quote: Write what should not be forgotten. by author Isabel Allende overlaid on photo of snow-covered mountain near lake under blue sky
Photo Credit: fynn

Write what should not be forgotten.


Quote: Kill your darlings, kill your darlings, even when it breaks your egocentric little scribbler's heart, kill your darlings. by author Stephen King overlaid on photo of pink rose
Photo Credit: Kaishin | OneLushLife

Kill your darlings, kill your darlings, even when it breaks your egocentric little scribbler's heart, kill your darlings.


Quote: A small daily task, if it be really daily, will beat the labours of a spasmodic Hercules. by author Anthony Trollope overlaid on photo of creative guy at desk
Photo Credit: Thomas Franke

A small daily task, if it be really daily, will beat the labours of a spasmodic Hercules.


Quote: We die. That may be the meaning of life. But we do language. That may be the measure of our lives. by author Toni Morrison overlaid on photo of woman in striped shirt sitting on bed while writing
Photo Credit: Kinga Cichewicz

We die. That may be the meaning of life. But we do language. That may be the measure of our lives.


Quote: Words do not express thoughts very well. They always become a little different immediately after they are expressed, a little distorted, a little foolish. by author Hermann Hesse overlaid on photo of red and white led lighted heart decor
Photo Credit: Izumi LaCorte

Words do not express thoughts very well. They always become a little different immediately after they are expressed, a little distorted, a little foolish.


Quote: If a nation loses its storytellers, it loses its childhood. by author Peter Handke overlaid on photo of black and silver retractable pen on blank book
Photo Credit: Mike Tinnion

If a nation loses its storytellers, it loses its childhood.


Quote: I always start writing with a clean piece of paper and a dirty mind. by author Patrick Dennis overlaid on photo of silver click pen on white paper
Photo Credit: R Mo

I always start writing with a clean piece of paper and a dirty mind.


Quote: To hold a pen is to be at war. by author Voltaire overlaid on photo of white spiral notebook on black wooden table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

To hold a pen is to be at war.


Quote: Literature is strewn with the wreckage of men who have minded beyond reason the opinions of others. by author Virginia Woolf overlaid on photo of black and white photography of alarm clock displaying 1:37 time
Photo Credit: Amanda Jones

Literature is strewn with the wreckage of men who have minded beyond reason the opinions of others.


Quote: Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart. by author William Wordsworth overlaid on photo of jumping on snow covered mountain during daytime
Photo Credit: Felipe Giacometti

Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart.


Quote: The unread story is not a story; it is little black marks on wood pulp. The reader, reading it, makes it live: a live thing, a story. by author Ursula K. Le Guin overlaid on photo of purple flowers under cloudy sky
Photo Credit: Aneta Foubíková

The unread story is not a story; it is little black marks on wood pulp. The reader, reading it, makes it live: a live thing, a story.


Quote: There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are. by author William Somerset Maugham overlaid on photo of pendant LED bulb
Photo Credit: Felix Steininger

There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.


Quote: Good things, when short, are twice as good. by author Tom Stoppard overlaid on photo of white spiral notebook on black wooden table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

Good things, when short, are twice as good.


Quote: The task of a writer consists of being able to make something out of an idea. by author Thomas Mann overlaid on photo of man sitting on concrete brick with opened laptop on his lap
Photo Credit: Avi Richards

The task of a writer consists of being able to make something out of an idea.


Quote: Writing is the most fun you can have by yourself. by author Terry Pratchett overlaid on photo of silhouette of person on top of mountain pointing flashlight on sky filled with stars at night time
Photo Credit: Dino Reichmuth

Writing is the most fun you can have by yourself.


Quote: Fiction is the truth inside the lie. by author Stephen King overlaid on photo of shallow focus photography of fountain pen
Photo Credit: John Jennings

Fiction is the truth inside the lie.


Quote: No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader. by author Robert Frost overlaid on photo of person wearing orange and gray Nike shoes walking on gray concrete stairs
Photo Credit: Bruno Nascimento

No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader.


Quote: The answer to all writing, to any career for that matter, is love. by author Ray Bradbury overlaid on photo of Magic Keyboard beside mug and click pen
Photo Credit: Leone Venter

The answer to all writing, to any career for that matter, is love.


Quote: I don't control my writing -- it controls me. by author Ray Bradbury overlaid on photo of person holding pencil near laptop computer
Photo Credit: Scott Graham

I don't control my writing -- it controls me.


Quote: You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you. by author Ray Bradbury overlaid on photo of silver click pen on white paper
Photo Credit: R Mo

You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you.


Quote: A word after a word after a word is power. by author Margaret Atwood overlaid on photo of person's hand holding round silver analog watch with black leather strap
Photo Credit: Wil Stewart

A word after a word after a word is power.


Quote: All our words are but crumbs that fall down from the feast of the mind. by author Khalil Gibran overlaid on photo of yellow and blue painted wall
Photo Credit: Bekky Bekks

All our words are but crumbs that fall down from the feast of the mind.


Quote: I could write an entertaining novel about rejection slips, but I fear it would be overly long. by author Louise Brown overlaid on photo of woman in striped shirt sitting on bed while writing
Photo Credit: Kinga Cichewicz

I could write an entertaining novel about rejection slips, but I fear it would be overly long.


Quote: Every writer I know has trouble writing. by author Joseph Heller overlaid on photo of person holding brown pencil
Photo Credit: Neven Krcmarek

Every writer I know has trouble writing.


Quote: Grammar is a piano I play by ear. All I know about grammar is its power. by author Joan Didion overlaid on photo of silver click pen on white paper
Photo Credit: R Mo

Grammar is a piano I play by ear. All I know about grammar is its power.


Quote: The waste basket is the writer's best friend. by author Isaac Bashevis Singer overlaid on photo of cactus flowers
Photo Credit: DiscoverQuotes Staff

The waste basket is the writer's best friend.


Quote: Writing is a dog's life, but the only life worth living. by author Gustave Flaubert overlaid on photo of notebook on table
Photo Credit: Kelly Sikkema

Writing is a dog's life, but the only life worth living.


Quote: Good writing is like a windowpane. by author George Orwell overlaid on photo of five children sitting on bench front of trees
Photo Credit: Piron Guillaume

Good writing is like a windowpane.




Quote: Words, once they are printed, have a life of their own. by author Carol Burnett overlaid on photo of road between yellow leaf trees at daytime
Photo Credit: quentin

Words, once they are printed, have a life of their own.


Quote: I tell writers to keep reading, reading, reading. Read widely and deeply. And I tell them not to give up even after getting rejection letters. And only write what you love. by author Anita Diament overlaid on photo of Bright orange to dark red gradient
Photo Credit: Luke Chesser

I tell writers to keep reading, reading, reading. Read widely and deeply. And I tell them not to give up even after getting rejection letters. And only write what you love.


Quote: The role of a writer is not to say what we all can say, but what we are unable to say. by author Anaïs Nin overlaid on photo of man sitting on concrete brick with opened laptop on his lap
Photo Credit: Avi Richards

The role of a writer is not to say what we all can say, but what we are unable to say.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

The role of the writer is not to say what we can all say, but what we are unable to say. Most of the writing today which is called fiction contains such a poverty of language, such triteness, that it is a shrunken, diminished world we enter, poorer and more formless than the poorest cripple deprived of ears and eyes and tongue. The writer's responsibility is to increase, develop our senses, expand our vision, heighten our awareness and enrich our articulateness.


black Corona typewriter on brown wood planks

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