"Writing is a delicious agony."
— Gwendolyn Brooks (via wordpainting)
"The first book is the book you have to write to get back at your parents, the book you always had in you. Once you get that out of your way, you can start writing books."
— Shirley Jackson
"Mostly we authors must repeat ourselves—that’s the truth. We have two or three great and moving experiences in our lives, experiences so great and moving that it doesn’t seem at the time that anyone else has been so caught up and pounded and dazzled and astonished and beaten and broken and rescued and illuminated and rewarded and humbled in just that way ever before. Then we learn our trade, well or less well, and we tell our two or three stories—each time in a new disguise—maybe ten times, maybe a hundred, as long as people will listen."
— F. Scott Fitzgerald, from “One Hundred False Starts” in A Short Autobiography
"If you serve time for society, democracy, and the other things quite young, and declining any further enlistment make yourself responsible only to yourself, you exchange the pleasant, comforting stench of comrades for something you can never feel in any other way than by yourself. That something I cannot yet define completely but the feeling comes when you write well and truly of something and know impersonally you have written in that way and those who are paid to read it and report on it do not like the subject so they say it is all a fake, yet you know its value absolutely."
— Ernest Hemingway, Green Hills of Africa