Happy Birthday, Stephen King, born 21 September 1947
12 Quotes On Writing
- Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work.
- The writer must have a good imagination to begin with, but the imagination has to be muscular, which means it must be exercised in a disciplined way, day in and day out, by writing, failing, succeeding and revising.
- Books are a uniquely portable magic.
- When your story is ready for rewrite, cut it to the bone. Get rid of every ounce of excess fat. This is going to hurt; revising a story down to the bare essentials is always a little like murdering children, but it must be done.
- I believe the road to hell is paved with adverbs, and I will shout it from the rooftops. To put it another way, they’re like dandelions. If you have one on your lawn, it looks pretty and unique. If you fail to root it out, however, you find five the next day … fifty the day after that … and then, my brothers and sisters, your lawn is totally, completely, and profligately covered with dandelions. By then you see them for the weeds they really are, but by then it’s—GASP!!—too late.
- The worst advice? ‘Don’t listen to the critics.’ I think that you really ought to listen to the critics, because sometimes they’re telling you something is broken that you can fix.
- Write with the door closed, rewrite with the door open.
- If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot. There’s no way around these two things that I’m aware of, no short cut.
- You can approach the act of writing with nervousness, excitement, hopefulness, or despair … Come to it any way but lightly.
- If you intend to write as truthfully as you can, your days as a member of polite society are numbered.
- Optimism is a perfectly legitimate response to failure.
- When asked, ‘How do you write?’ I invariably answer, ‘one word at a time’.
King is an American author of horror, suspense, science fiction and fantasy. His books have sold more than 350 million copies and have been adapted into a number of feature films, television movies and comic books. King has published 50 novels, including seven under the pen-name of Richard Bachman, and five non-fiction books. He has written nearly 200 short stories. King has received many literary awards including the Grand Master Award from the Mystery Writers of America.
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