Quotes About Writing

Here are some of my favorite quotations about writing, from writers and others.

Writing is a solitary endeavor, but not a lonely one. When you write, your world is populated by the characters you invent and you feel those people filling your life.
—Danielle Steel

If my doctor told me I had only six minutes to live, I wouldn’t brood. I’d type a little faster.
—Isaac Asimov

The difference between fiction and reality? Fiction has to make sense.
—Tom Clancy

The role of a writer is not to say what we all can say, but what we are unable to say.
—Anaïs Nin

Everybody walks past a thousand story ideas every day. The good writers are the ones who see five or six of them. Most people don’t see any.
—Orson Scott Card

Hard writing makes easy reading. Easy writing makes hard reading.
—William Zinsser

A writer is a person for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.
—Thomas Mann

I try to leave out the parts that people skip.
—Elmore Leonard

First, find out what your hero wants, then just follow him!
—Ray Bradbury

I’m not much of a correspondent. My letters are not only uninteresting but sparse. I’m glad I don?t have to write for a living. It?s arduous work and the money is very uncertain. On those rare occasions when I wander into a bookstore it amazes me to see the avalanche of literature and semi-literature that is turned out weekly in this country. The people who write these things are either desperate for money or love starved. Why should anyone on a nice balmy day lock oneself in an office and hit a typewriter for hours on end. I think one of the greatest pleasures in the world is not writing…
—Groucho Marx

Writing is an occupation in which you have to keep proving your talent to those who have none.
—Jules Renard

Writing is not necessarily something to be ashamed of, but do it in private and wash your hands afterwards.
—Robert A. Heinlein

Write something to suit yourself and many people will like it; write something to suit everybody and scarcely anyone will care for it.
—Jesse Stuart

Writers seldom write the things they think. They simply write the things they think other folks think they think.
—Elbert Hubbard

I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.
—Douglas Adams

I love being a writer. What I can’t stand is the paperwork.
—Peter De Vries

Writing a novel is like driving a car at night. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.
—E. L. Doctorow

Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep.
—Scott Adams

Writing gives you the illusion of control, and then you realize it’s just an illusion, that people are going to bring their own stuff into it.
—David Sedaris

A synonym is a word you use when you can’t spell the other one.
—Baltasar Gracián

Stories may well be lies, but they are good lies that say true things, and which can sometimes pay the rent.
—Neil Gaiman

You can’t say, I won’t write today because that excuse will extend into several days, then several months, then… you are not a writer anymore, just someone who dreams about being a writer.
—Dorothy C. Fontana