Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Anne Lamott: don't always have to chop with the sword of truth. You can point with it, too.

Bird by Bird, p. 156

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Henry James:

A writer is someone on whom nothing is lost.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Anne Lamott:

The way I dance is by writing.

Bird by Bird, p. 130

Friday, April 24, 2009

Brenda Ueland:

And what is the purpose of existence Here or Yonder but to discover truth and beauty and express it, i.e., share it with others?

If You Want to Write, p. 179

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Max Lucado:

Jesus listened to his common life. Are you listening to yours? Rain pattering against the window. Silent snow in April. The giggle of a baby on a crowded plane. Seeing a sunrise while the world sleeps. Are these not personal epistles? Can't God speak through a Monday commute or a midnight diaper change? Take notes on your life.

Mocha with Max, p. 117

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Vincent Van Gogh:

...I tell you the more I think, the more I feel that there is nothing more truly artistic than to love people.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Anne Lamott:

Take the attitude that what you are thinking and feeling is valuable stuff, and then be naive enough to get it all down on paper.

Bird by Bird, p. 113

Friday, April 17, 2009

Brenda Ueland:

And in every sentence, no matter what horror, evil and misery a truly great book my describe, I know that I seem to have a feeling of wonderful gratitude and hope (really and literally I can hardly read a Chekhov of Tolstoi without a kind of obstruction in my throat of grateful emotion), for I say to myself: at least there has lived in the world a great man like this writer -- too great to be a brilliant know-it-all, too kind to be a satirist. If this is so, I am glad I live in this world too and believe in God and all His creations.

If You Want to Write, p. 125

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Anne Lamott:

To be a good writer, you not only have to write a great deal but you have to care.

Bird by Bird, p. 107

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Brenda Ueland:

...I have come to think that the only way to become a better writer is to become a better person. By better I do not mean goody-goodier, for a great person often does things that so-called good people think very bad indeed. And I have come to think there is irony in the lives of writers who sit at a desk always, tenderly or crossly protecting themselves from all disturbances, danger or uncomfortableness, so that they can work out a better literary style.

If You Want to Write, p. 129-130

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Anne Lamott:

When what we see catches us off guard, and when we write it as realistically and openly as possible, it offers hope.

Bird by Bird, p. 101

Monday, April 13, 2009

Brenda Ueland: must not try too hard to be honest, sincere, in your writing, for that too is a kind of falseness. When you are honest there is no trying about it. You are just quietly honest and that is all there is to it.

If You Want to Write, p. 123

Friday, April 10, 2009

Anne Lamott:

There is ecstasy in paying attention. You can get into a kind of Wordsworthian openness to the world, where you see in everything the essence of holiness, a sign that God is implicit in all of creation.

Bird by Bird, p. 100

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Brenda Ueland:

That is another reason why I think it is a fine thing to write. People who do it, do not ignore any more the bad passions in themselves and shut their eyes to them, ostrichlike, but begin to take a good and interested look at these passions and try to understand them, and are even glad they have them because it has set them thinking.

If You Want to Write, p. 110

Friday, April 3, 2009

Anne Lamott:

This is our goal as writers, I think; to help others have this sense of -- please forgive me -- wonder, of seeing things anew, things that can catch us off guard, that break in on our small, bordered worlds. When this happens, everything feels more spacious.

Bird by Bird, p. 100

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Brenda Ueland:

I learned that you should feel when writing, not like Lord Byron on a mountain top, but like a child stringing beads in kindergarten -- happy, absorbed and quietly putting one bead on after another.

If You Want to Write, p. 50

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

C. S. Lewis:

Thirty was so strange for me. I've really had to come to terms with the fact that I am now a walking and talking adult.