The following are a few of my favorite quotes, along with a brief personal observation:
Ernest Hemingway – Prose is architecture, not interior decoration.
Prose requires a solid foundation. I always feel like I’m building a story rather than simply writing it. That’s not just an easy metaphor. I strive for words, sentences, and paragraphs that are muscular and provocative. Sometimes I succeed.
Willa Cather – Most of the basic material a writer works with is acquired before the age of fifteen.
I took a creative writing course in high school and didn’t learn a thing. In college I wrote papers for English and didn’t learn a thing. I don’t believe that a person can be taught to write a novel any more than I believe that someone can teach me how to hit a major league curve ball.
Ralph Waldo Emerson – People do not deserve to have good writing, they are so pleased with bad.
The good news is that a lot of it is free. Just visit Amazon or Goodreads and load up your Kindle with all the promotional giveaways if you’re not particular about what you read. Not all of it is bad, but a lot of it is.
William Faulkner – Get it down. Take chances. It may be bad, but it’s the only way you can do anything reakky good.
Don’t play it safe. Push the envelope. If you don’t, your writing will taste like plain vanilla. Nobody likes plain vanilla.