Quotes on writing

A selection from my digital notes, arbitrarily culled from personal reading; citations in footnotes

Roger Ebert1:

[Sportswriter Bill Lyon] gave me the most useful advice I have ever received as a writer: “One, don’t wait for inspiration, just start the damn thing. Two, once you begin, keep on until the end. How do you know how the story should begin until you find out where it’s going?” These rules saved me half a career’s worth of time and gained me a reputation as the fastest writer in town. I’m not faster. I spend less time not writing.

R. A. Salvatore2:

My process is simple: I have an outline, I start writing, I throw away the outline and the characters take me on an adventure.

You’re doing something right if the story is pulling you instead of listening to you.

Neil Gaiman3:

On the whole, anything that gets you writing and keeps you writing is a good thing. Anything that stops you writing is a bad thing.

George R.R. Martin4:

There are days I really enjoy writing and there are days I f–king hate it. I can see it in my head and the words won’t come. I try to put it on the page and it feels stiff and wooden and it’s stupid. Writing is hard work.

On my best writing days, which don’t come very often, I lose track of all time and space. I fall into my chair in the morning, and then look up and it’s dark outside and my back hurts.

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