10 Best Quotes About Writing

 
 

When it comes to the performance of any art form — drawing, singing, dancing, writing, scultping, what-have-you — it probably isn't a big leap to say that all performers know the mix of passion, fear, and frustration. In those times when the latter two start to overshadow the former one, it helps to hear from others who understand.

As a writer, I find myself turning to the quotes below quite often. Through them, I know that I am not alone in the experience; that all the struggles and triumphs are equally worth it; and that I should — and will — keep writing, no matter what.


10. “We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.”
— Anaïs Nin

9. “You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you.”
— Ray Bradbury

8. “The greatest part of a writer’s time is spent in reading, in order to write; a man will turn over half a library to make one book.”
— Samuel Johnson

7. “There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.”
— Maya Angelou

6. “The most important things are the hardest to say. They are the things you get ashamed of, because words diminish them — words shrink things that seemed limitless when they were in your head to no more than living size when they're brought out. But it's more than that, isn't it? The most important things lie too close to wherever your secret heart is buried, like landmarks to a treasure your enemies would love to steal away. And you may make revelations that cost you dearly only to have people look at you in a funny way, not understanding what you've said at all, or why you thought it was so important that you almost cried while you were saying it. That's the worst, I think. When the secret stays locked within not for want of a teller but for want of an understanding ear.”
— Stephen King

5. “Don't tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.”
— Anton Chekhov

4. “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.”
— Ernest Hemingway

3. “Love words, agonize over sentences. And pay attention to the world.”
— Susan Sontag

2. “To gain your own voice, you have to forget about having it heard.”
— Allen Ginsberg

1. “One day I will find the right words, and they will be simple.”
— Jack Kerouac

 
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Annika Tubito is a freelance writer who splits her time between New York City and Milan. When she's not writing, reading, or wielding her red pen to edit the heck out of something, she's traveling, traveling, traveling. She loves a good grammar argument. Get her riled up.