Quotes from Writers to Writers
I find famous quotes quite amusing. I certainly hope you enjoy a few I choose to share.
I put things down on sheets of paper and stuff them in my pockets. When I have enough, I have a book.
– John Lennon
I usually need a can of beer to prime.
– Norman Mailer
Some American writers who have known each other for years have never met in the day time or when both were sober.
– James Thurber
Writing is an adventure. To begin with, it is a toy and an amusement. Then it becomes a mistress, then it becomes a master, then it becomes a tyrant. The last phrase is that just as you are about to be reconciled to your servitude, you kill the monster and fling him to the public.
– Winston Churchill
If I could think, maybe I wouldn’t write.
– Scott Spencer
People do not deserve to have good writing; they are so pleased with bad.
– Ralph Waldo Emerson
To write weekly, to write daily, to write shortly, to write for busy people catching trains in the morning or for tired people coming home in the evening, is a heartbreaking task for men who know good writing from bad.
– Virginia Woolf
Poets are like baseball. Both have their moments. The intervals are the tough things.
– Robert Frost
I always believed in writing without a collaborator, because where two people are writing the same book, each believes he gets all the worries and only half the royalties.
– Agatha Christie
What I find is that I can write and do other things when the creative urge seizes one – at, least, such is my experience – one becomes creative in all directions at once.
– Henry Miller
You can fire your secretary, divorce your spouse, abandon your children, but they remain your co-authors forever.
– Ellen Goodman
They just wanted to sell books, that’s all they wanted to do. It wasn’t about anything, and I knew that – I figured they had to know that, they were in the business of it.
– Bob Dylan
I should be sorry to think it was the publishers themselves they got up this entire little flutter to enable them to unload a book that was taking too much room in their cellars, but you can never tell what a publisher will do. I have been one myself.
– Mark Twain
What a writer’s obituary should read – he wrote the books, then he died.
– William Faulkner
I object to publishers: the one service they have done me is to teach me to do without them. They combine commercial rascality with artistic touchiness and pettishness, without being either good businessmen, were fine judges of literature. All that is necessary for the production of a book is an author and a bookseller, without the intermediate parasite.
– George Bernard Shaw
The one thing I have learned about editing over the years is that you have to edit and publish out of your own tastes, enthusiasms, and concerns, and not out of notions or guesswork about what other people might like to read.
– Norman Cousins
No passion in the world is equal to the passion to alter someone else’s draft.
– H. G. Wells
Some editors are failed writers, but so are most writers.
– T. S. Elliott
Let every eye negotiate for itself, and trust no agent.
– William Shakespeare
An author who gives a manager or a publisher and the writes to his work except those immediately and specifically required for its publication or performance is for business purposes and imbecile. As 99% of English authors and 100% of American authors are, managers and publishers – make a practice of asking for every right the author possesses.
– George Bernard Shaw
Whenever I publish a book, I feel like a trapper caught by the Iroquois. They’re all lined up with Tomahawks, and the idea is to run through with your head down, and everybody gets to take a swing. They hit you in the head, the back, the ass, and the balls.
– Stephen King
A poem is never a put-up job so to speak. It begins as a lump in the throat, a sense of wrong, homesickness, a love sickness. It is never a thought to begin with.
– Robert Frost
Poetry is the opening and closing of the door, leaving those who look through to guess about what was seen during a moment.
– Carl Sandburg
The beginner who submits a detective novel longer than 80,000 words is courting rejection.
– Howard Haycraft
I type in one place, but I write all over the house.
– Toni Morrison
They can’t yank the novelist like they can a pitcher. A novelist has to go the full nine, even if it kills him.
– Ernest Hemingway
From the moment I picked your book up until I laid it down, I was convulsed with laughter. Someday I intend reading it.
(Note – a reference to S. J. Perelman’s first book).
– Groucho Marx
If you are 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
Many people who want to be writers don’t really want to be writers. They want to have been writers. They wish they had a book in print.
– James Michener
Planning to write is not writing. Outlining a book is not writing. Researching is not writing. Talking to people about what you are doing, none of that is writing. Writing is writing.
– EL Doctorow
In stating as fully as I could how things really were, it was often very difficult and I wrote awkwardly and the awkwardness is what they called my style. All mistakes and awkwardness are easy to see, and they called it style.
– Ernest Hemingway
Thanks for taking the time to read what I found enjoyable.