35 Quotes to Reinvigorate Your Writing Life

Ahh… writers we have a love of words. They take us on a journey into untold worlds, they fuel our imaginations, they lift us up and make us swoon with desire… that we may be able to write to make others stop everything even if only for a moment. To stop everything and be wholly in the universe of letters we string together… to touch some part of people’s hearts wounded, or aching, or yearning for that moment to be fully present and lost in a dream of what could be all at the same time.

Maybe even just for a chuckle, a smile, a subtle lift at the corners of the mouth and a brief twinkle in the eyes. A sigh, an aha, a respite. A moment when everything shifts into a new perspective. Sweetness. A whisper in the dark. The ground beneath moves. Passion invigorating movement. Stillness.

Writers love to invent, weave, dream, communicate. We write because we need to. It’s something we must do, because not to is death to our soul. But occasionally our muse slips away, and we find our inspiration waning, our mind’s sleepy and lethargic. During times like this a collection of inspirational quotes from other writers who’ve gone before us, who’ve likely experienced the emptiness too could be just the thing we need to get our juices flowing again.

Here are some of my favourite quotes about writing to help put the pen back in your hand, or fingers to the keyboard with renewed passion.

 

“I love writing. I love the swirl and swing of words as they tangle with human emotions.”

—James Michener

 

“We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.”

—Anaïs Nin

 

“Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart.”

—William Wordsworth

 

“Don’t bend; don’t water it down; don’t try to make it logical; don’t edit your own soul according to the fashion. Rather, follow your most intense obsessions mercilessly.”

—Franz Kafka

 

“Find out the reason that commands you to write; see whether it has spread its roots into the very depth of your heart; confess to yourself you would have to die if you were forbidden to write.”

—Rainer Maria Rilke

 

“A good writer possesses not only his own spirit but also the spirit of his friends.”

—Friedrich Nietzsche

 

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.”

—Maya Angelou

 

“If there’s a book you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.”

—Toni Morrison

 

“For your born writer, nothing is so healing as the realization that he has come upon the right word.”

—Catherine Drinker Bowen

 

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

—Agatha Christie

 

“I can shake off everything as I write; my sorrows disappear, my courage is reborn.”

—Anne Frank

 

“The idea is to write it so that people hear it and it slides through the brain and goes straight to the heart.”

—Maya Angelou

 

“If a story is in you, it has to come out.”

—William Faulkner

 

“Your intuition knows what to write, so get out of the way.”

—Ray Bradbury

 

“The scariest moment is always just before you start.”

—Stephen King

 

“Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on.”

―Louis L’Amour

 

“And by the way, everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worse enemy to creativity is self-doubt.”

—Sylvia Plath

 

“Write what disturbs you, what you fear, what you have not been willing to speak about. Be willing to be split open.”

—Natalie Goldberg

 

“That’s the thing about books, they let you travel without moving your feet.”

—Jhumpa Lahiri

 

“We have to continually be jumping off cliffs and developing our wings on the way down.”

—Kurt Vonnegut

 

“I write to give myself strength. I write to be the characters that I am not. I write to explore all the things I am afraid of.”

—Joss Whedon

 

“If it’s still in your mind it is worth taking the risk.”

—Paulo Coelho

 

“The role of a writer is not to say what we all can say, but what we are unable to say.”

—Anaïs Nin

 

“If I waited for perfection I would never write a word.”

—Margaret Atwood

 

“Better to write for yourself and have no public, than to write for the public and have no self.”

—Cyril Connolley

 

“Get it down. Take chances. It may be bad, but it’s the only way you can do anything really good.”

—William Faulkner

 

“I don’t wait for moods. You accomplish nothing if you do that. Your mind must know it has got to get down to work.”

—Pearl S. Buck

 

“You can’t blame a writer for what the characters say.”

—Truman Capote

 

“I write entirely to find out what I’m thinking, what I’m looking at, what I see and what it means. What I want and what I fear.”

—Joan Didion

 

“There is no denying the wild horse in us.”

—Virginia Woolf

 

“No need to force yourself to do something the “right way” if it’s not your right way. Your job is to honor your process.”

—Andi Cumbo Floyd

 

“Give me books, fruit, French wine, fine weather and a little music.”

—John Keats

 

“There is something delicious about writing the first words of a story. You never quite know where they’ll take you.”

―Beatrix Potter

 

“If something inside of you is real, we will probably find it interesting, and it will probably be universal. So you must risk placing real emotion at the center of your work. Write straight into the emotional center of things.”

—Anne Lamott

 

“I learned never to empty the well of my writing, but always to stop when there was still something there in the deep part of the well, and let it refill at night from the springs that fed it.”

– Ernest Hermingway

 

Do you have any favourites you’d like to add? Please comment and share!

Kiernan