Writing & Blogging

Tips for Writing from Famous Writers

Writing a book is such a weird action. An idea forms in your head, including multiple personas who all have different personalities and opinions, and you create their world in your head. You share it with other people by clicking buttons on a keyboard and eventually your ideas go to live in other people’s heads. And somehow, it’s critical to your being that you do this, and thousands (if not millions) of people across the world feel the same way! Anyway, if you’re one of those people who does this strange thing and need some advice, check out what these 11 famous published authors have to say.

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Looking for writing inspiration? Turn to the greats! Eleven quotes from famous authors featuring tips for writing.

“Whenever you make art, you’re always gambling.” – Elizabeth Gilbert (I strongly suggest that any and all creatives check out Big Magic*!)

”If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write.” – Stephen King

“Don’t get hung up on the rules because rules are only guidelines. They are there to serve you, not enslave you.” – Elizabeth Chadwick

“Write what you know: your own interests, feelings, beliefs, friends, family and even pets will be your raw materials when you start writing.” – J. K. Rowling

“An author should say what he is proposing to say, not merely come near it.” – Mark Twain

“I was a journalist before I was an academic, and I got in the habit of writing where and when I needed to, so I just sit down and get to it.” – Philippa Gregory

Jodi Picoult on writing

“There’s no magic bullet that’ll make you a success. If you write because you want to be rich, you’re in the wrong business. Write because you can’t not write, or don’t write at all.” – Jodi Picoult

“I feel that writers are treated like orchids: they keep us in the hothouse, they mist us and attend to our every need, but if this system is going to work, if we are going to survive, we need to come out of the hothouse and take responsibility for ourselves and for the health of the industry.” – Ann Patchett

“You describe a sweet place, but your descriptions are often more minute than will be liked.” – Jane Austen, in a letter to her niece

“I try to leave out the parts people skip.” – James Patterson

“Write a commercial manuscript. This does NOT mean selling or writing a spy novel.” – Dan Brown

Check out these books on writing*:

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