13 Stephen King Quotes to Help Jumpstart the Writing Process

Flynn Hannan
Writers Republic
Published in
4 min readFeb 21


As a writer, there will be times where you won’t feel like writing. You may have had your work criticized, or you may have had your manuscript rejected by a publishing company. Don’t feel too bad, this happens to every writer at least once.

What’s important is that you know how to stay motivated. You will also need to jumpstart the writing process. That way your writing will stay fun and effective.

If you want great tips on how to improve your writing, you should take inspiration from the great Stephen King. He is one of the most famous and successful authors in the world. Dubbed the King of Horror novels, he has a writing career that most writers could only dream of. However, before his meteoric rise to success, Stephen King was also struggling as a writer, and was also rejected many times. Overall he is a perfect source of writing wisdom for many struggling writers. Here are some Stephen King quotes on writing that will jumpstart the writing process.

1. Writing isn’t about making money, getting famous, getting dates, getting laid, or making friends. In the end, it’s about enriching the lives of those who will read your work, and enriching your own life, as well. It’s about getting up, getting well, and getting over. Getting happy, okay? Getting happy.

2. In many cases when a reader puts a story aside because it ‘got boring,’ the boredom arose because the writer grew enchanted with his powers of description and lost sight of his priority, which is to keep the ball rolling.

3. So okay― there you are in your room with the shade down and the door shut and the plug pulled out of the base of the telephone. You’ve blown up your TV and committed yourself to a thousand words a day, come hell or high water. Now comes the big question: What are you going to write about? And the equally big answer: Anything you damn well want.

4. Words create sentences; sentences create paragraphs; sometimes paragraphs quicken and begin to breathe.

5. I’m a slow reader, but I usually get through seventy or eighty books a year, most fiction. I don’t read in order to study the craft; I read because I like to read.

6. Good description is a learned skill, one of the prime reasons why you cannot succeed unless you read a lot and write a lot. It’s not just a question of how-to, you see; it’s also a question of how much to. Reading will help you answer how much, and only reams of writing will help you with the how. You can learn only by doing.

7. Bad writing is more than a matter of shit syntax and faulty observation; bad writing usually arises from a stubborn refusal to tell stories about what people actually do― to face the fact, let us say, that murderers sometimes help old ladies cross the street.

8. I like to get ten pages a day, which amounts to 2,000 words. That’s 180,000 words over a three-month span, a goodish length for a book — something in which the reader can get happily lost, if the tale is done well and stays fresh.

9. If you intend to write as truthfully as you can, your days as a member of polite society are numbered.

10. Let’s get one thing clear right now, shall we? There is no Idea Dump, no Story Central, no Island of the Buried Bestsellers; good story ideas seem to come quite literally from nowhere, sailing at you right out of the empty sky: two previously unrelated ideas come together and make something new under the sun. Your job isn’t to find these ideas but to recognize them when they show up.

11. Writing is a lonely job. Having someone who believes in you makes a lot of difference. They don’t have to makes speeches. Just believing is usually enough.

12. I think the best stories always end up being about the people rather than the event, which is to say character-driven.

13. One of the really bad things you can do to your writing is to dress up the vocabulary, looking for long words because you’re maybe a little bit ashamed of your short ones. This is like dressing up a household pet in evening clothes. The pet is embarrassed and the person who committed this act of premeditated cuteness should be even more embarrassed.


There will be times as a writer that you will feel inadequate. You may feel that your writing is subpar, and you could not seem to concentrate on the writing process. Don’t worry though, Stephen King also had his fair share of challenges as a writer. With these tips, you’ll be able to jumpstart the writing process.



Flynn Hannan
Writers Republic

Bibliophile , Senior Indie Editor at Writers Republic