20 Quotes About Writing

  1. I try to create sympathy for my characters, then turn the monsters loose. – Stephen King
  2. It’s none of their business that you have to learn to write. Let them think you were born that way. – Ernest Hemingway
  3. If you can tell stories, create characters, devise incidents, and have sincerity and passion, it doesn’t matter how you write. – Somerset Maugham
  4. It is perfectly okay to write garbage—as long as you edit brilliantly. – C. J. Cherryh
  5. Any man who keeps working is not a failure. He may not be a great writer, but if he applies the old-fashioned virtues of hard, constant labor, he’ll eventually make some kind of career for himself as writer. – Ray Bradbury
  6. If you have other things in your life—family, friends, good productive day work—these can interact with your writing and the sum will be all the richer. – David Brin
  7. Most of the basic material a writer works with is acquired before the age of fifteen. – Willa Cather
  8. Half my life is an act of revision. – John Irving
  9. People on the outside think there’s something magical about writing, that you go up in the attic at midnight and cast the bones and come down in the morning with a story, but it isn’t like that. You sit in back of the typewriter and you work, and that’s all there is to it. – Harlan Ellison
  10. 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
  11. Writing a novel is like driving a car at night. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way. – E. L. Doctorow
  12. Get it down. Take chances. It may be bad, but it’s the only way you can do anything really good. – William Faulkner
  13. It is the writer who might catch the imagination of young people, and plant a seed that will flower and come to fruition. – Isaac Asimov
  14. Writing is its own reward. – Henry Miller
  15. Tell the readers a story! Because without a story, you are merely using words to prove you can string them together in logical sentences. – Anne McCaffrey
  16. All the information you need can be given in dialogue. – Elmore Leonard
  17. Everybody walks past a thousand story ideas every day. The good writers are the ones who see five or six of them. Most people don’t see any. – Orson Scott Card
  18. All the words I use in my stories can be found in the dictionary—it’s just a matter of arranging them into the right sentences. – Somerset Maugham
  19. 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
  20. If you want to change the world, pick up your pen and write. – Martin Luther
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