Quotes


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QuoteAuthor
Books aren't written- they're rewritten.  Including your own.  It is one of the hardest things to accept, especially after the seventh rewrite hasn't quite done it.Michael Crichton
My life has been full of terrible misfortunes, most of which never happened.Michel de Montaigne
If you're a singer you lose your voice.  A baseball player loses his arm.  A writer gets more knowledge, and if he's good, the older he gets, the better he writes.Mickey Spillane
I always do the first line well, but I have trouble doing the others.Moliere
Writing is like prostitution. First you do it for love, and then for a few close friends, and then for money.Moliere
Writing is a cop-out. An excuse to live perpetually in fantasy land, where you can create, direct and watch the products of your own head. Very selfish.Monica Dickens
Author: A fool, who, not content with having bored those who have lived with him, insists on tormenting the generations to come.Montesquieu
The universe is made of stories, not of atoms.Muriel Rukeyser
Agatha Christie has given more pleasure in bed than any other woman.Nancy Banks Smith
In the end, you have to just sit down, shut up, and write.Natalie Goldberg
Words - so innocent and powerless as they are, as standing in a dictionary, how potent for good and evil they become in the hands of one who knows how to combine them.Nathaniel Hawthorne
Easy reading is damned hard writing.Nathaniel Hawthorne
One hasn't become a writer until one has distilled writing into a habit, and that habit has been forced into an obsession. Writing has to be an obsession. It has to be something as organic, physiological and psychological as speaking or sleeping or eating.Niyi Osundare
Writing doesn't make you neurotic. Neurotics become writers. Nora Roberts
Writing is the hardest way of earning a living, with the possible exception of wrestling alligators.Olin Miller
Manuscript: something submitted in haste and returned at leisure. Oliver Herford (1863-1935)
As difficult as it is for a writer to find a publisher--admittedly a daunting task--it is twice as difficult for a publisher to sort through the chaff, select the wheat, and profitably publish a worthy list.
Olivia Goldsmith
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
Short stories are designed to deliver their impact in as few pages as possible. A tremendous amount is left out, and a good short story writer learns to include only the most essential information.
Orson Scott Card
I was working on the proof of one of my poems all the morning, and took out a comma. In the afternoon I put it back again.Oscar Wilde
Biography lends to death a new terrorOscar Wilde
I never want to see anyone, and I never want to go anywhere or do anything. I just want to write.P. G. Wodehouse
I just sit at a typewriter and curse a bit.

...after being asked about his writing technique
P. G. Wodehouse
Success comes to a writer, as a rule, so gradually that it is always something of a shock to him to look back and realize the heights to which he has climbed.P.G. Wodehouse
Artists don't talk about art.
Artists talk about work.
If I have anything to say to young writers,
it's stop thinking of writing as art.
Think of it as work
Paddy Chayefsky
The last thing one settles in writing a book  is what one should put in first.Pascal
A writer's voice is not character alone, it is not style alone; it is far more.  A writer's voice line the stroke of an artist's brush- is the thumbprint of her whole person- her idea, wit, humor, passions, rhythms.  Patricia Lee Gauch
Writing isn´t hard. It isn´t any harder than ditch-digging.
Patrick Dennis
You have to be dogged to be a novelist. You can’t just do it when you want to.Paul Auster
Always grab the reader by the throat in the first paragraph, sink your thumbs into his windpipe in the second, and hold him against the wall until the tag line.Paul O'Neil
Follow the path of your aroused thought, and you will soon meet this infernal inscription: There is nothing so beautiful as that which does not exist.Paul Valery
I don't wait for moods.
You accomplish nothing if you do that.
Your mind must know it has got to get down to earth."
Pearl Buck
The only way to learn to write is to write.
Peggy Teeters
Rewriting is like scrubbing the basement floor with a toothbrush.Pete Murphy
Against the disease of writing one must take special precautions, for it is a dangerous and a contagious disease.Peter Abelard
I write when I'm inspired, and see to it that I'm inspired at nine o'clock every morning.Peter De Vries
I love being a writer. What I can't stand is the paperwork.Peter De Vries
“Sometimes I write drunk and revise sober, and sometimes I write sober and revise drunk. But you have to have both elements in creation — the Apollonian and the Dionysian, or spontaneity and restraint, emotion and discipline.”Peter De Vries
When people say to me: 'How do you do so many things?' I often answer them, without meaning to be cruel: 'How do you do so little?' It seems to me that people have vast potential. Most people can do extraordinary things if they have the confidence or take the risks. Yet most people don't. They sit in front of the telly and treat life as if it goes on foreverPhilip Adams
I have always believed that writing advertisements is the second most profitable form of writing. The first, of course, is ransom notes...Philip Dusenberry
I turn sentences around. That's my life. I write a sentence and then I turn it around. Then I look at it and I turn it around again. Then I have lunch. Then I come back in and write another sentence. Then I have tea and turn the new sentence around. Then I read the two sentences over and turn them both around. Then I lie down on my sofa and think. Then I get up and throw them out and start from the beginning.Philip Roth
As a writer, I play with words all day long. I toy with them, listen for their overtones, crack them open, and try to stuff my thoughts inside.Philip Yancey
You must want to enough.  Enough to take all the rejections, enough to pay the price of disappointment and discouragement while you are learning.  Like any other artist, you are learning your craft- then you can add all the genius you like.Phyllis Whitney
The high note is not the only thing.Placido Domingo
Be a scribe! Your body will be sleek, your hand will be soft. You
are one who sits grandly in your house; your servants answer speedily; beer is poured copiously; all who see you rejoice in good cheer. Happy is the heart of him who writes; he is young each day.
Ptahhotep, 4500 BC
If you describe things as better than they are, you are considered to be a romantic; if you describe things as worse than they are, you will be called a realist; and if you describe things exactly as they are, you will be thought of as a satirist.Quentin Crisp
What is needed is, in the end, simply this: solitude, great inner solitude. Going into yourself and meeting no one for hours on end--that is what you must be able to attain. Rainer Maria Rilke
The act of writing requires a constant plunging back into the shadow of the past where time hovers ghostlike.Ralph Ellison
There is properly no history; only biography.Ralph Waldo Emerson
What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within usRalph Waldo Emerson
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