Words of Inspiration

Recently I tackled a task I have long been putting off, which is sorting through my collection of Writers Digest magazines, which I shamefully hardly ever refer to, and start thinning down the stack. My motivation? I’ve been working on a new book, something that’s nothing like anything I’ve written in the past, and I was in need of some helpful articles and words of wisdom from those who’ve “been there and done that” — to great success. As expected, I found a good amount of material relevant to my needs. But even in my “throwaway” pile, I found that there were inspiring tidbits of information for me to clip and save… sort of like coupons for writers that will never expire! Here are some of my favorite pieces of writing advice from a variety of authors, which appeared in the January 2010 issue of Writers Digest. I hope you find them as helpful and inspirational as I did!

“Good writing is remembering details most people want to forget. Don’t forget things that are painful or embarrassing or silly. Turn them into a story that tells the truth.”

~Paula Danziger

“Write. Rewrite. When not writing or rewriting, read. I know of no shortcuts.”

~Larry King

“Writing is like being in love. You never get better at it, or learn more about it. The day you think you do is the day you lose it. Robert Frost called his work a lover’s quarrel with the world. It’s ongoing. It has neither a beginning nor an end. You don’t have to worry about learning things. The fire of one’s art never burns all the impurities from the vessel that contains it.”

~James Lee Burke

“In truth, I never consider the audience for whom I’m writing. I just write what I want to write.”

~J.K. Rowling

“Transitions are critically important. I want the reader to turn the page without thinking she’s turning the page. It must flow seamlessly.”

~Janet Evanovich

“A genuine creation should have character, as well as be one; should have central heating, so to say, as well as exterior lighting.”

~James Hilton

“I try to write a certain amount each day, five days a week. A rule sometimes broken is better than  no rule.”

~Herman Wouk

“I have never felt like I was creating anything. For me, writing is like walking through a desert, poking up through the hardpan, I see the top of a chimney. I know there’s a house down there, and I’m pretty sure that I can dig it up if I want. That’s how I feel. It’s like the stories are already there. What they pay me for is the leap of faith that says: ‘If I sit down and do this, everything will come out okay.’”

~Stephen King

“People do not spring forth out of the blue, fully formed– they become themselves slowly, day by day, starting from babyhood. They are the result of both environment and heredity, and your fictional characters, in order to be believable, must be also.”

~Lois Duncan

“What a writer has to do is write what hasn’t been written before, or beat dead men at what they have done.”

~Ernest Hemingway

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1 Comment

  1. I needed this! Thank you for sharing!

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