I came across a few quotations about writing that my mother sent me, and I thought they were more or less worth sharing. The sources of most of these are unknown (at least from the sheet I’m looking at), but they are sure to delight. Enjoy:
1. We learn writing by doing it.
2. Listen to receptivity. The deeper you can listen, the better you can write.
3. Stay in your original mind and write from it.
4. Just write. Just write. Just write.
5. If you want to write, you’ll find a way to write. no matter what.
6. Don’t listen to doubt. It leads no place but to pain and negativity. Instead, have a tenderness and determination toward your writing, a sense of humor and a deep patience that you are doing the right thing. Avoid getting caught by the small gnawing mouse of doubt. See beyond it to the vastness of life and the belief in time and patience.
7. Creativity is the opposite. It’s the loss of control.
8. Go into writing with your whole heart.
9. Writing is like sex. First you do it for love. Then for a few friends. Then finally for the money. – Moliere
10. I suspect that he was a child…who accepted being alone quite a lot. I think this sort of person often becomes either a writer or a career criminal. – Anne Larnott, Bird by Bird
11. Good writing is about telling the truth.
12. Anyone who survived childhood has enough material to write for the rest of his or her life. – Flannery O’Connor.
13. For me and most of the other writers I know, writing is not rapturous. In fact, the only way I can get anything written at all is to write really, really shitty first drafts. – Unknown
14. Almost all good writing begins with terrible first efforts.
15. Perfectionism will ruin your writing, blocking inventiveness and playfulness and life force.
16. Nothing is as important as a likeable narrator. Nothing holds a story together better.
17. To be a good writer you not only have to write a great deal, but you have to care.
18. You get your intuition back when you make space for it, when you stop the chattering of the rational mind. The rational mind doesn’t nourish you. you assume that it gives you the truth, because the rational mind is the golden calf that this culture worships, but this is not true. Rationality squeezes out much that is rich and juicy and fascinating. – Unknown
19. Try to calm down, get quiet, breathe, and listen.
20. Writing takes a combination of sophistication and innocence.
21. Eventually you have to sit down like every other writer and face a blank page.
That’s what we have. It’s all we have, really. Ourselves.