Thursday, April 19, 2012

Q is for Quote

 from W.O.W. Writers on Writing, by Jon Winokur

"Take care of the sense and the sounds will take care of themselves."
                                                                                                                 Lewis Carol

"Read, read, read.  Read everything--trash, classics, good and bad, and see how they do it.  Just like a carpenter who works as an apprentice and studies the master.  Read! You'll absorb it.  Then write.  If it is good, you'll find out.  If it's not, throw it out the window."
                                                                                                             William Faulkner

Write freely and as rapidly as possible and throw the whole thing on paper.  Never correct or re-write until the whole thing is down.  Rewrite in process is usually found to be an excuse for not going on.
                                                                                                            John Steinbeck

As to the adjective:  when in doubt, strike it out.
                                                                                                           Mark Twain

 Writing Itself:

All good writing is swimming under water and holding your breath.

                                                                                                          F. Scott Fitzgerald

Writing is the hardest work in the world not involving heavy lifting.
                                                                                                          Pete Hamil

I love writing.  I love the swirl and the swing of words as they tangle with human emotions.
                                                                                                          James Michener

I have tried simply to write the best I can; sometimes I have good luck and write better than I can.
                                                                                                        Ernest Hemingway

If I didn't know the ending of the story, I wouldn't begin.  I always write my last line, my last paragraph, my last page first.
                                                                                                     Katherine Anne Porter

Nice writing isn't enough.  It isn't enough to have smooth and pretty language.  You have to surprise the reader frequently, you can't be nice all the time.  Provoke the reader.  Astonish the reader.  Writing that has no surprises is as bland as oatmeal.  Surprise the reader with the unexpected verb or adjective.  Use one startling adjective per page.
                                                                                                            Anne Bernays

Any advice from the writers in the A-Z Challenge?


  1. i love all of the quotes--i tend to think like john's quote and not like ms porters

  2. Hi again, Lynn. When I imagine a story, I always see the end, so strange. But this is what I think, it has to do with how one thinks, are you linear or shotgun? Math people, logical ones, would start from the beginning and logically continue from there, but my thinking is shotgun, I am not a math person, but I am very creative and feel I have a little ADD.

  3. The James Michener quote would sum me up best. I like all the quotes, though.

    A to Z Blogger & SF/Fantasy Writer @ Visions of Other Worlds

    1. They all have different opinions just like we do. Here is a quote from the book: "One constant remains:these are writers who love writing. Even when they hate it."

  4. excellent quotes and so many to choose from. Mark Twain was always good for a quip - and so on target. Thanks for visiting wordsplash. My movie reviews are fun - I do them for my aunt's paper. She lives 4 hours away in the town with no cinema. I could NOT imagine that life, but she loves it. Looking forward to more of your a to z. Thanks

    1. Your post was so interesting. Movie reviews, not always easy to write.

  5. You found some great quotes for this post. What's striking about writers' words of wisdom about writing is how contradictory they can be. Just goes to show us, there is no one right way to write. When in doubt, drop the adjectives? Or use a surprising new adjective on each page? I guess the best we can do is absorb what the greats have to say, and then find our own way as best we can.

    1. Thanks, Susan, so true, not one way to write. And I do think everyone has his/her own style.

  6. Love the quotes you used for this post. And yes - shows how contradictory the opinions can be.

  7. Some excellent advice to be found in these quotes. I really need to do what Steinbeck suggests--this is why I probably haven't finished anything yet.

    Thanks for the comment you left on Tossing It Out about writing about my show biz experience. I do plan on doing that before too long.

    And I'm now following your blog!

    Places I Remember
    Wrote By Rote
    An A to Z Co-host blog