Quotes About Writing

Quotes tagged as "writing" (showing 121-150 of 3,000)
Ernest Hemingway
“My aim is to put down on paper what I see and what I feel in the best and simplest way.”
Ernest Hemingway

Ray Bradbury
“The good writers touch life often. The mediocre ones run a quick hand over her. The bad ones rape her and leave her for the flies.”
Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451

Virginia Woolf
“A woman knows very well that, though a wit sends her his poems, praises her judgment, solicits her criticism, and drinks her tea, this by no means signifies that he respects her opinions, admires her understanding, or will refuse, though the rapier is denied him, to run through the body with his pen.”
Virginia Woolf, Orlando

Pablo Picasso
“Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.”
Pablo Picasso

Franz Kafka
“A non-writing writer is a monster courting insanity."

[Letter to Max Brod, July 5, 1922]”
Franz Kafka

Kurt Vonnegut
“Who is more to be pitied, a writer bound and gagged by policemen or one living in perfect freedom who has nothing more to say?”
Kurt Vonnegut

Dylan Thomas
“A good poem is a contribution to reality. The world is never the same once a good poem has been added to it. A good poem helps to change the shape of the universe, helps to extend everyone's knowledge of himself and the world around him.”
Dylan Thomas

Thomas Jefferson
“The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one will do.”
Thomas Jefferson

William Goldman
“Cynics are simply thwarted romantics.”
William Goldman, The Princess Bride

Friedrich Nietzsche
“All I need is a sheet of paper
and something to write with, and then
I can turn the world upside down.”
Friedrich Nietzsche

Margaret Atwood
“The only way you can write the truth is to assume that what you set down will never be read. Not by any other person, and not even by yourself at some later date. Otherwise you begin excusing yourself. You must see the writing as emerging like a long scroll of ink from the index finger of your right hand; you must see your left hand erasing it.”
Margaret Atwood, The Blind Assassin

Stephen King
“Write with the door closed, rewrite with the door open.”
Stephen King, On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft

Virginia Woolf
“A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction.”
Virginia Woolf, A Room of One's Own

Dr. Seuss
“It has often been said
there’s so much to be read,
you never can cram
all those words in your head.

So the writer who breeds
more words than he needs
is making a chore
for the reader who reads.

That's why my belief is
the briefer the brief is,
the greater the sigh
of the reader's relief is.

And that's why your books
have such power and strength.
You publish with shorth!
(Shorth is better than length.)”
Dr. Seuss

Neil Gaiman
“When writing a novel, that's pretty much entirely what life turns into: 'House burned down. Car stolen. Cat exploded. Did 1500 easy words, so all in all it was a pretty good day.”
Neil Gaiman

Willa Cather
“Most of the basic material a writer works with is acquired before the age of fifteen.”
Willa Cather

Isaac Asimov
“I write for the same reason I breathe - because if I didn't, I would die.”
Isaac Asimov

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

Anthony Burgess
“We can destroy what we have written, but we cannot unwrite it.”
Anthony Burgess, A Clockwork Orange

Maya Angelou
“When Great Trees Fall

When great trees fall,
rocks on distant hills shudder,
lions hunker down
in tall grasses,
and even elephants
lumber after safety.

When great trees fall
in forests,
small things recoil into silence,
their senses
eroded beyond fear.

When great souls die,
the air around us becomes
light, rare, sterile.
We breathe, briefly.
Our eyes, briefly,
see with
a hurtful clarity.
Our memory, suddenly sharpened,
examines,
gnaws on kind words
unsaid,
promised walks
never taken.

Great souls die and
our reality, bound to
them, takes leave of us.
Our souls,
dependent upon their
nurture,
now shrink, wizened.
Our minds, formed
and informed by their
radiance,
fall away.
We are not so much maddened
as reduced to the unutterable ignorance
of dark, cold
caves.

And when great souls die,
after a period peace blooms,
slowly and always
irregularly. Spaces fill
with a kind of
soothing electric vibration.
Our senses, restored, never
to be the same, whisper to us.
They existed. They existed.
We can be. Be and be
better. For they existed.”
Maya Angelou

Harlan Ellison
“The ability to dream is all I have to give. That is my responsibility; that is my burden. And even I grow tired.”
Harlan Ellison, Stalking the Nightmare

Sylvia Plath
“Some things are hard to write about. After something happens to you, you go to write it down, and either you over dramatize it, or underplay it, exaggerate the wrong parts or ignore the important ones. At any rate, you never write it quite the way you want to.”
Sylvia Plath, The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath

Margaret Atwood
“Perhaps I write for no one. Perhaps for the same person children are writing for when they scrawl their names in the snow.”
Margaret Atwood

Charles Bukowski
“some moments are nice, some are
nicer, some are even worth
writing
about.”
Charles Bukowski, War All the Time

Toni Morrison
“Anger ... it's a paralyzing emotion ... you can't get anything done. People sort of think it's an interesting, passionate, and igniting feeling — I don't think it's any of that — it's helpless ... it's absence of control — and I need all of my skills, all of the control, all of my powers ... and anger doesn't provide any of that — I have no use for it whatsoever."

[Interview with CBS radio host Don Swaim, September 15, 1987.]”
Toni Morrison

Jennifer Weiner
“Cram your head with characters and stories. Abuse your library privileges. Never stop looking at the world, and never stop reading to find out what sense other people have made of it. If people give you a hard time and tell you to get your nose out of a book, tell them you're working. Tell them it's research. Tell them to pipe down and leave you alone.”
Jennifer Weiner

Roald Dahl
“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”
Roald Dahl

Chuck Palahniuk
“The first step - especially for young people with energy and drive and talent, but not money - the first step to controlling your world is to control your culture. To model and demonstrate the kind of world you demand to live in. To write the books. Make the music. Shoot the films. Paint the art.”
Chuck Palahniuk

Kurt Vonnegut
“When I write, I feel like an armless, legless man with a crayon in his mouth.”
Kurt Vonnegut

Sylvia Plath
“Living with him is like being told a perpetual story: his mind is the biggest, most imaginative I have ever met. I could live in its growing countries forever.”
Sylvia Plath, The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath

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