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10 Instructive Quotes That Every Newbie Writer Should Hear!

If you are thinking of becoming a professional writer, you will need to brush up on your writing skills. But this is easier said than done, because the writing process is very multifaceted. This is why you should get as much help as possible. Here are 10 Instructive quotes from famous authors to get you started.

1. “When I sit down to write a book, I do not say to myself, ‘I am going to produce a work of art.’ I write it because there is some lie that I want to expose, some fact to which I want to draw attention, and my initial concern is to get a hearing.”

— George Orwell

2. “If it sounds like writing, I rewrite it. Or, if proper usage gets in the way, it may have to go. I can’t allow what we learned in English composition to disrupt the sound and rhythm of the narrative.”

— Elmore Leonard

3. “The writing of a novel is taking life as it already exists, not to report it but to make an object, toward the end that the finished work might contain this life inside it and offer it to the reader. The essence will not be, of course, the same thing as the raw material; it is not even of the same family of things. The novel is something that never was before and will not be again.”

— Eudora Welty

4. “If you tell the reader that Bull Beezley is a brutal-faced, loose-lipped bully, with snake’s blood in his veins, the reader’s reaction may be, ‘Oh, yeah!’ But if you show the reader Bull Beezley raking the bloodied flanks of his weary, sweat-encrusted pony, and flogging the tottering, red-eyed animal with a quirt, or have him booting in the protruding ribs of a starved mongrel and, boy, the reader believes!
— Fred East

5. “All stories have to at least try to explain some small portion of the meaning of life. You can do that in 20 minutes, and 15 inches. I still remember a piece that the great Barry Bearak did in TheMiami Herald some 30 years ago. It was a nothing story, really: Some high school kid was leading a campaign to ban books he found offensive from the school library. Bearak didn’t even have an interview with the kid, who was ducking him. The story was short, mostly about the issue. But Bearak had a fact that he withheld until the kicker. The fact put the whole story, subtly, in complete perspective. The kicker noted the true, wonderful fact that the kid was not in school that day because “his ulcer was acting up.” Meaning of life, 15 inches.”

— Gene Weingarten

6. “You do not have to explain every single drop of water contained in a rain barrel. You have to explain one drop — H2O. The reader will get it.”
— George Singleton

7. “Write while the heat is in you. … The writer who postpones the recording of his thoughts uses an iron which has cooled to burn a hole with.”
— Henry David Thoreau

8. “Whether a character in your novel is full of choler, bile, phlegm, blood or plain old buffalo chips, the fire of life is in there, too, as long as that character lives.”
— James Alexander Thom

9. “The difference between the almost right word and the right word is … the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning.”
— Mark Twain

10. “I almost always urge people to write in the first person. … Writing is an act of ego and you might as well admit it.”
— William Zinsser

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