What 12 Authors Have to Say About the Writing Process

by on July 10, 2015

Ever feel like writing is the most difficult task in the world, but when it’s done right, it’s the most wonderful thing that could ever happen? You’re not alone. Take a look at what these twelve authors have to say about the writing process (we’ll give you a hint — it’s not all fun and games). Get inspired, and then go write something.


“I hate writing, I love having written.” — Dorothy Parker


“Prose is architecture, not interior decoration.” — Ernest Hemingway


“Any man who keeps working is not a failure. He may not be a great writer, but if he applies the old-fashioned virtues of hard, constant labor, he’ll eventually make some kind of career for himself as a writer.” — Ray Bradbury


“To produce a mighty book, you must choose a mighty theme.” — Herman Melville


“It is perfectly okay to write garbage — as long as you edit brilliantly.” — C.J. Cherryh


“The only thing I was fit for was to be a writer, and this notion rested solely on my suspicion that I would never be fit for real work, and that writing didn’t require any.” — Russell Baker


“A blank piece of paper is God’s way of telling us how hard it is to be God.” — Sidney Sheldon


“Most of the basic material a writer works with is acquired before the age of fifteen.” — Willa Cather


“The more closely the author thinks of why he wrote, the more he comes to regard his imagination as a kind of self-generating cement which glued his facts together, and his emotions as a kind of dark and obscure designer of those facts. Reluctantly, he comes to the conclusion that to account for his book is to account for his life.” — Richard Wright


“Writing a novel is like driving a car at night. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.” — E.L. Doctorow


“I went for years not finishing anything. Because, of course, when you finish something you can be judged.” — Erica Jong


“Half my life is an act of revision.” — John Irving

Featured Image: Brendan DeBrincat/Flickr Creative Commons