writing quotes-3

“It’s none of their business that you have to learn how to write. Let them think you were born that way.” ~ Ernest Hemingway

“If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot.” ~ Stephen King

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.” ~ Maya Angelou

“I love deadlines. I love the whooshing noise they make as they go by.” ~ Douglas Adams, The Salmon of Doubt

“A writer is working when he’s staring out of the window.” ~ Burton Rascoe

“Just write every day of your life. Read intensely. Then see what happens. Most of my friends who are put on that diet have very pleasant careers.” ~ Ray Bradbury

“Close the door. Write with no one looking over your shoulder. Don’t try to figure out what other people want to hear from you; figure out what you have to say. It’s the one and only thing you have to offer.” ~ Barbara Kingsolver

“The English language is an arsenal of weapons. If you are going to brandish them without checking to see whether or not they are loaded, you must expect to have them explode in your face from time to time.” ~ Stephen Fry

“If my doctor told me I had only six minutes to live, I wouldn’t brood. I’d type a little faster.” ~ Isaac Asimov

“The scariest moment is always just before you start. After that, things can only get better.” ~ Stephen King

“And by the way, everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.” ~ Sylvia Plath

“The best time to plan a book is while you’re doing the dishes.” ~ Agatha Christie

“There are three rules for writing the novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.” ~ W. Somerset Maugham

“[As a writer] you have to have the three D’s: drive, discipline and desire. If you’re missing any one of those three, you can have all the talent in the world, but it’s going to be really hard to get anything done.” ~ Nora Roberts

“I try to write a certain amount each day, five days a week. A rule sometimes broken is better than no rule.” ~ Herman Wouk

72 of the Best Quotes About Writing

For those days when the well is feeling dry and a tad echo-y, I keep a running list of my favorite quotes—things I’ve read, things I’ve edited, things I’ve found in the WD archives, things people have said to me in interviews.

A couple of years ago, I posted a portion of this list on my old WD blog (around the same time we ran a great quote feature on 90 tips from bestselling authors in the magazine). Recently, someone asked if I was still collecting quotes.

Image placeholder title

“The road to hell is paved with adverbs.”
—Stephen King

“Who wants to become a writer? And why? Because it’s the answer to everything. … It’s the streaming reason for living. To note, to pin down, to build up, to create, to be astonished at nothing, to cherish the oddities, to let nothing go down the drain, to make something, to make a great flower out of life, even if it’s a cactus.”
—Enid Bagnold

“Cheat your landlord if you can and must, but do not try to shortchange the Muse. It cannot be done. You can’t fake quality any more than you can fake a good meal.”
—William S. Burroughs

Image placeholder title

Image placeholder title

“It ain’t whatcha write, it’s the way atcha write it.”
—Jack Kerouac, WD

“Not a wasted word. This has been a main point to my literary thinking all my life.”
—Hunter S. Thompson

“When I sit down to write a book, I do not say to myself, ‘I am going to produce a work of art.’ I write it because there is some lie that I want to expose, some fact to which I want to draw attention, and my initial concern is to get a hearing.”
—George Orwell

Image placeholder title

Image placeholder title

Image placeholder title

Image placeholder title

Image placeholder title

“I would advise anyone who aspires to a writing career that before developing his talent he would be wise to develop a thick hide.”
—Harper Lee, WD

“I think the deeper you go into questions, the deeper or more interesting the questions get. And I think that’s the job of art.”
—Andre Dubus III, WD (this quote is from an interview with Dubus in our July/August 2012 issue)

“Geniuses can be scintillating and geniuses can be somber, but it’s that inescapable sorrowful depth that shines through—originality.”
—Jack Kerouac, WD

“People say, ‘What advice do you have for people who want to be writers?’ I say, they don’t really need advice, they know they want to be writers, and they’re gonna do it. Those people who know that they really want to do this and are cut out for it, they know it.”
—R.L. Stine, WD (this quote is from an interview with Stine that ran in our November/December 2011 issue)

“I don’t need an alarm clock. My ideas wake me.”
—Ray Bradbury, WD

“Just write every day of your life. Read intensely. Then see what happens. Most of my friends who are put on that diet have very pleasant careers.”
—Ray Bradbury, WD

“Let the world burn through you. Throw the prism light, white hot, on paper.”
—Ray Bradbury, WD

“Remember: Plot is no more than footprints left in the snow after your characters have run by on their way to incredible destinations.”
—Ray Bradbury, WD

Image placeholder title

Tell us about your book, and we’ll give you a writing playlist

80. “When your story is ready for a 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.” — Stephen King

81. “The best advice on writing was given to me by my first editor, Michael Korda, of Simon and Schuster, while writing my first book. ‘Finish your first draft and then we’ll talk,’ he said. It took me a long time to realize how good the advice was. Even if you write it wrong, write and finish your first draft. Only then, when you have a flawed whole, do you know what you have to fix.” — Dominick Dunne

92. “I would write a book, or a short story, at least three times — once to understand it, the second time to improve the prose, and a third to compel it to say what it still must say. Somewhere I put it this way: first drafts are for learning what one’s fiction wants him to say. Revision works with that knowledge to enlarge and enhance an idea, to reform it. Revision is one of the exquisite pleasures of writing.” — Bernard Malamud

writing quotes-6

How many writers does it take to screw in a light bulb? “But why do we have to CHANGE it?” Luckily, there are more ways to identify a born writer than just that model response, as these writing quotes show.

98. “People say, ‘What advice do you have for people who want to be writers?’ I say, they don’t really need advice, they know they want to be writers, and they’re gonna do it. Those people who know that they really want to do this and are cut out for it, they know it.” — R.L. Stine

102. “I go out to my little office, where I’ve got a manuscript, and the last page I was happy with is on top. I read that, and it’s like getting on a taxiway. I’m able to go through and revise it and put myself — click — back into that world.” — Stephen King

104. “Each writer is born with a repertory company in his head. Shakespeare has perhaps 20 players. I have 10 or so, and that’s a lot. As you get older, you become more skillful at casting them.” — Gore Vidal

108. “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.” — Margaret Chittenden

From cavemen to our modern day in the 21st-century, we have written our joys and sorrows throughout history. What compels us to write? Here’s what some of the most beloved writers we know have to say.

writing quotes-5

As any writer knows, there are no actual “rules” in this craft. That said, these writing quotes reveal some famous principles in writing that won’t let you down.

135. “The main rule of writing is that if you do it with enough assurance and confidence, you’re allowed to do whatever you like. (That may be a rule for life as well as for writing. But it’s definitely true for writing.) So write your story as it needs to be written. Write it ­honestly, and tell it as best you can. I’m not sure that there are any other rules. Not ones that matter.” — Neil Gaiman

136. “Exercise the writing muscle every day, even if it is only a letter, notes, a title list, a character sketch, a journal entry. Writers are like dancers, like athletes. Without that exercise, the muscles seize up.” — Jane Yolen

138. “My aim in constructing sentences is to make the sentence utterly easy to understand, writing what I call transparent prose. I’ve failed dreadfully if you have to read a sentence twice to figure out what I meant.” — Ken Follett

139. “And one of [the things you learn as you get older] is, you really need less… My model for this is late Beethoven. He moves so strangely and quite suddenly sometimes from place to place in his music, in the late quartets. He knows where he’s going and he just doesn’t want to waste all that time getting there… One is aware of this as one gets older. You can’t waste time.” — Ursula K. Le Guin

140. “Part 1. I notice that you use plain, simple language, short words and brief sentences. That is the way to write English — it is the modern way and the best way. Stick to it; don’t let fluff and flowers and verbosity creep in.

Part 2. When you catch an adjective, kill it. No, I don’t mean utterly, but kill most of them – then the rest will be valuable. They weaken when they are close together. They give strength when they are wide apart.

2 responses

Continue reading

How to Write a Self-Help Book (That Actually Helps People)

What Is Symbolism? Definition and Examples

Affect vs. Effect: 3 Tricks to Never Mistake Them Again

Affect is usually a verb that means “to create a change” in something, while effect is usually a noun that describes “a change that is caused” by something. In other words, an affect produces an effect.

Please Steal These Ideas! 30 Things to Write About

7 Elements of a Story: The Recipe for a Great Narrative

How to Write: 5 Ways To Level Up Your Writing

Source:

https://www.writerscollegeblog.com/famous-quotes-on-writing/
https://www.writersdigest.com/whats-new/72-of-the-best-quotes-about-writing
https://blog.reedsy.com/writing-quotes/