Friday #Blogshare – Inspiring Writing Quotes from Famous Authors

Friday blogshare



My Friday blogshare is full of wisdom. I’m sharing Anne R. Allen’s blog post on famous quotes by famous writers. A fun read and a lot of ‘aha’ moments to be had!


Just a few of these goodies to whet your appetite. Please visit Anne’s blog to read more. . .


by Ruth Harris

Editing, revising and rewriting—

“I was working on the proof of one of my poems all the morning, and took out a comma. In the afternoon I put it back again.” — Oscar Wilde

“I handed in a script last year and the studio didn’t change one word. The word they didn’t change was on page 87.” — Steve Martin

“Substitute ‘damn’ every time you’re inclined to write ‘very’; your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.” — Mark Twain

“I work very hard on the writing, writing and rewriting and trying to weed out the lumber.” — David McCullough

“Most of my work consisted of crossing out. Crossing out is the secret of all good writing.” — Mark Haddon


“Any time you get two people in a room who disagree about anything, the time of day, there is a scene to be written. That’s what I look for.” — Aaron Sorkin

“You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.” ― Jack London

“Creativity flourishes in small structured spaces.” — Eve Barbeau (in a comment on this blog.)

“Inspiration comes from so many sources. Music, other fiction, the non-fiction I read, TV shows, films, news reports, people I know, stories I hear, misheard words or lyrics, dreams. Motivation? The memory of the rush I get from a really good writing session—even on a bad day, I know I’ll find that again if I keep going.” — Trudi Canavan

“Good writing excites me, and makes life worth living.” — Harold Pinter

“Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work.” Stephen King

“When I was writing Kitchen Confidential, I was in my 40s, I had never paid rent on time, I was 10 years behind on my taxes, I had never owned my own furniture or a car.” — Anthony Bourdain

Writing routines (or lack thereof)—

“I don’t have much of a routine. I go through periods where I work a great deal at all hours of the day whenever I am around a typewriter, and then I go through spells where I don’t do anything. I just sort of have lunch—all day. I never have been able to stick to a schedule. I work when there is something due or when I am really excited about a piece.” — Nora Ephron

“Just write every day of your life. Read intensely. Then see what happens. Most of my friends who are put on that diet have very pleasant careers.” — Ray Bradbury

“Keep a small can of WD-40 on your desk—away from any open flames—to remind yourself that if you don’t write daily, you will get rusty.”— George Singleton

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

“If I don’t feel like writing on a certain day, I just go to the cafe and hang around.” — Elizabeth Berg

Shit, crap and housework—

“You don’t start out writing good stuff. You start out writing crap and thinking it’s good stuff, and then gradually you get better at it. That’s why I say one of the most valuable traits is persistence.” — Octavia E. Butler

“The best time for planning a book is while you’re doing the dishes.” — Agatha Christie

“Writing advice is bull****, but sometimes bull**** fertilizes” — Chuck Wendig

“Almost all good writing begins with terrible first efforts.“ — Anne Lamott

“All first drafts are shit.” — Ernest Hemingway

The road to hell—

“The road to hell is paved with adverbs.”— Stephen King

“The road to hell is paved with works-in-progress.” — Philip Roth

Sales and pay checks—

“The first page sells this book. The last page sells your next book.”— Mickey Spillane

“The freelance writer is a man who is paid per piece or per word or perhaps.” — Robert Benchley

Natural talent—

“Some critics will write ‘Maya Angelou is a natural writer’—which is right after being a natural heart surgeon.” — Maya Angelou

“I was too heavy to be a jockey and too honest to be a producer, so I became a writer.” — Leon Uris

“Writing is a job, a talent, but it’s also the place to go in your head. It is the imaginary friend you drink your tea with in the afternoon.” — Ann Patchett

“Easy reading is damn hard writing.” — Nathaniel Hawthorne

“The first four months of writing the book, my mental image is scratching with my hands through granite. My other image is pushing a train up the mountain, and it’s icy, and I’m in bare feet.” — Mary Higgins Clark


Please visit Anne’s blog to read more quotes for more categories.



14 thoughts on “Friday #Blogshare – Inspiring Writing Quotes from Famous Authors

  1. Hi Debby, I love quotations – some great ones there Thank you. I have a few favourites of my own which I can’t remove as I’m so fond of them! (See WordPress) One of mine?: “Humour is sanity’s favourite hand-maiden.” Joy


    1. Lol Sue! There are quite a few great books with quick reads to update on commas and all things grammar punctuation. I highly recommend Eats, Shoots, Leaves – a small little book that is an easy reference guide when we have those forgetful moments. 🙂 ❤ xx


  2. I really like this one, Debby. “You don’t start out writing good stuff. You start out writing crap and thinking it’s good stuff, and then gradually you get better at it. That’s why I say one of the most valuable traits is persistence.”


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