Saturday, February 29, 2020
Wednesday, February 26, 2020
I am a writer, and I write what I want to write.
When you’re speaking in the truest, most intimate voice about your life, you are speaking with the universal voice.
The first person you should think of pleasing in writing a book is yourself. If you can amuse yourself for the length of time it takes to write a book, the publishers and the readers can and will come later.
I do a lot of rewriting. It’s very painful.
Never use an adverb to modify the verb “said.”
I think it’s terribly dangerous for an artist to fulfill other people’s expectations. They generally produce their worst work when they do that.
I can shake off everything if I write; my sorrows disappear, my courage is reborn.
I never forget that the average man, from the fields, the streets, the bars, the offices and even the gutters of his country, has acquired a vividness of speech that goes beyond anything I could invent.
—James M. Cain
If I'm going to sing like someone else, then I don't need to sing at all.
The writer should never be ashamed of staring. There is nothing that does not require his attention.
Monday, February 24, 2020
Wednesday, February 19, 2020
A good style should show no sign of effort. What is written should seem to be a happy accident.
—W. Somerset Maugham
Read good books, have good sentences in your ears. Be by yourself as often as you can. Walk. Take the phone off the hook.
Write one good clean sentence and put a period at the end of it. Then write another one.
Do it now—write nothing but what your conviction of its truth inspires you to write.
—Percy Bysshe Shelley
There’s many a bestseller that could have been prevented by a good teacher.
If I put love into the work, it will find friends.
—Vincent Van Gogh
I write as straight as I can, just as I walk as straight as I can, because that is the best way to get there.
Style is knowing who you are, what you want to say, and not caring what anyone else says.
Tuesday, February 18, 2020
Wednesday, February 12, 2020
All writers have this vague hope that the elves will come in the night and finish any stories.
Be still when you have nothing to say; when genuine passion moves you, say what you've got to say, and say it hot.
—D. H. Lawrence
Tell a story! Don’t try to impress your reader with style or vocabulary or neatly turned phrases. Tell the story first.
Writing is finally about one thing: going into a room and doing it.
It is impossible to discourage real writers—they don't give a damn what you say, they're going to write.
An age is called Dark not because the light fails to shine, but because the people fail to see it.
—James A. Michener
Anytime anybody tells me the trend is such and such, I go the opposite direction.
The difference between life and the movies is that a script has to make sense, and life doesn’t.
—Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Well, let them talk. I can take it. Only one person can hurt me. Her name is Ida Lupino.
My advice is not to wait to be struck by an idea. If you’re a writer, you sit down and damn well decide to have an idea.
To gain your own voice, you have to forget about having it heard.
Tuesday, February 11, 2020
Monday, February 10, 2020
Wednesday, February 5, 2020
Work every day. No matter what has happened the day or night before, get up and bite on the nail.
I just give myself permission to suck. I delete about 90 percent of my first drafts … so it doesn’t really matter much if on a particular day I write beautiful and brilliant prose...I’m just gonna delete whatever I write anyway. I find this hugely liberating.
We often miss opportunity because it's dressed in overalls and looks like work.
—Thomas A. Edison
Never treat your audience as customers, always as partners.
You're only given one little spark of madness. You mustn't lose it.
Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on.
Stay afraid, but do it anyway. What’s important is the action. Just do it and the confidence will follow.
Fairy tales are more than true not because they tell us that dragons exist but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten.
—G. K. Chesterton
Only a generation of readers will spawn a generation of writers.