Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Writing Advice to Read

Authors on Preparation

“If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time — or the tools — to write. Simple as that.” – Stephen King

"Protect the time and space in which you write. Keep everybody away from it, even the people who are most important to you." — Zadie Smith

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

"In the planning stage of a book, don't plan the ending. It has to be earned by all that will go before it." — Rose Tremain

"Always carry a note-book. And I mean always. The short-term memory only retains information for three minutes; unless it is committed to paper you can lose an idea for ever." — Will Self

Authors on Writing

“Start telling the stories that only you can tell, because there’ll always be better writers than you and there’ll always be smarter writers than you. There will always be people who are much better at doing this or doing that — but you are the only you.” ― Neil Gaiman

“You don't write about the horrors of war. No. You write about a kid's burnt socks lying in the road.” ― Richard Price

“Always be a poet, even in prose.” — Charles Baudelaire

“The first draft of everything is shit.” — Ernest Hemingway

“You can fix anything but a blank page.” — Nora Roberts


Authors on Revision

“Remember: when people tell you something’s wrong or doesn’t work for them, they are almost always right. When they tell you exactly what they think is wrong and how to fix it, they are almost always wrong.” — Neil Gaiman

"Listen to the criticisms and preferences of your trusted 'first readers.'" — Rose Tremain

“If it sounds like writing, I rewrite it.” — Elmore Leonard

"Read it aloud to yourself because that's the only way to be sure the rhythms of the sentences are OK (prose rhythms are too complex and subtle to be thought out—they can be got right only by ear)." — Diana Athill

"The main rule of writing is that if you do it with enough assurance and confidence, you're allowed to do whatever you like. (That may be a rule for life as well as for writing. But it's definitely true for writing.) So write your story as it needs to be written. Write it honestly, and tell it as best you can. I'm not sure that there are any other rules. Not ones that matter." — Neil Gaiman


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