124 Best On Writing Quotes And Sayings

Having a great idea for a book or an article, but not knowing how to put it all down? You’re not alone. Even well-known authors and wordsmiths have trouble putting their thoughts and feelings on paper. But it doesn’t have to be so hard. Take a look at these on-writing quotes about inspiration and motivation to get the ball rolling.

I kept always two books in my pocket, one to...
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I kept always two books in my pocket, one to read, one to write in. Robert Louis Stevenson
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In the deepest hour of the night, confess to yourself that you would die if you were forbidden to write. And look deep into your heart where it spreads its roots, the answer, and ask yourself, must I write? Rainer Maria Rilke
If you are a writer you locate yourself behind a...
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If you are a writer you locate yourself behind a wall of silence and no matter what you are doing, driving a car or walking or doing housework you can still be writing, because you have that space. Joyce Carol Oates
A successful book is not made of what is in...
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A successful book is not made of what is in it, but what is left out of it. Mark Twain
And there was that poor sucker Flaubert rolling around on...
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And there was that poor sucker Flaubert rolling around on his floor for three days looking for the right word. Dorothy Parker
People without hope not only don't write novels, but what...
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People without hope not only don't write novels, but what is more to the point, they don't read them. Flannery OConnor
To be a poet is a condition, not a profession.
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To be a poet is a condition, not a profession. Robert Frost
The last thing one discovers in composing a work is...
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The last thing one discovers in composing a work is what to put first. Blaise Pascal
You can't wait for inspiration. You have to go after...
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You can't wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club. Jack London
Write what should not be forgotten.
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Write what should not be forgotten. Isabel Allende
A woman must have money and a room of her...
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A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction. Virginia Woolf
A good book isn't written, it's rewritten.
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A good book isn't written, it's rewritten. Phyllis A. Whitney
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All the stories I would like to write persecute me. When I am in my chamber, it seems as if they are all around me, like little devils, and while one tugs at my ear, another tweaks my nose, and each says to me, 'Sir, write me, I am beautiful. Umberto Eco
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The writer's only responsibility is to his art. He will be completely ruthless if he is a good one. He has a dream. It anguishes him so much he must get rid of it. He has no peace until then. Everything goes by the board: honor, pride, decency, security, happiness, all, to get the book written. If a writer has to rob his mother, he will not hesitate; the 'Ode on a Grecian Urn' is worth any number of old ladies. . William Faulkner
Never put off writing until you are better at it.
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Never put off writing until you are better at it. Gary Henderson
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It's possible, in a poem or a short story, to write about commonplace things and objects using commonplace but precise language, and to endow those things-- a chair, a window curtain, a fork, a stone, a woman's earring-- with immense, even startling power. It is possible to write a line of seemingly innocuous dialogue and have it send a chill along the reader's spine-- the source of artistic delight, as Nabokov would have it. That's the kind of writing that most interests me. Raymond Carver
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Evan Connell said once that he knew he was finished with a short story when he found himself going through it and taking out commas and then going through the story again and putting the commas back in the same places. I like that way of working on something. I respect that kind of care for what is being done. That's all we have, finally, the words, and they had better be the right ones, with the punctuation in the right places so that they an best say what they are meant to say. If the words are heavy with the writer's own unbridled emotions, or if they are imprecise and inaccurate for some other reason -- if the worlds are in any way blurred -- the reader's eyes will slide right over them and nothing will be achieved. Henry James called this sort of hapless writing 'weak specification'. Raymond Carver
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The one thing which seems to me quite impossible is to take into consideration the kind of book one is expected to write; surely one can only write the book that is there to be written., 8 September 1935) Dorothy L. Sayers
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V.S. Pritchett's definition of a short story is 'something glimpsed from the corner of the eye, in passing.' Notice the 'glimpse' part of this. First the glimpse. Then the glimpse gives life, turned into something that illuminates the moment and may, if we're lucky -- that word again -- have even further ranging consequences and meaning. The short story writer's task is to invest the glimpse with all that is in his power. He'll bring his intelligence and literary skill to bear (his talent), his sense of proportion and sense of the fitness of things: of how things out there really are and how he sees those things -- like no one else sees them. And this is done through the use of clear and specific language, language used so as to bring to life the details that will light up the story for the reader. For the details to be concrete and convey meaning, the language must be accurate and precisely given. The words can be so precise they may even sound flat, but they can still carry; if used right they can hit all the notes. Raymond Carver
I have stolen ideas from every book I have ever...
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I have stolen ideas from every book I have ever read. Philip Pullman