One of my newer hobbies is collecting quotes I think are fabulous, inspirational, even breath-taking.  I share them in presentations, newsletters, email, and hand-written notes, but I never seem to have them all in a convenient place...to come back again and again for motivation...to push my thinking...to ground new learning.  This new page will hold all the completely quotable gems about writing and reading I am discovering.  I'd be delighted if you'd add your favorites too!

(And, as with all things...it will be a work in progress.)

When we teach writing, we teach young people to live differently because they write.  ~Lucy Calkins & Shelley Harwayne, 1991

Don’t be afraid to live like a writer.  Writers explore.  There are two whole universes for you to explore---the one on the inside, and the physical one on the outside.  Take your choice; inner or outer.  Or best: both.”  ~Ralph Fletcher, 1996

Writing…do it every day for awhile.  Do it as you would do scales on a piano.  Do it by prearrangements with yourself.  Do it as a debt of honor and make a commitment to finishing things.”  ~Anne Lamott, 1994

The writing life is a life with all the windows and doors opened.  ~Julia Alvarez, 1999

If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot.  ~Stephen King, 2002

You won’t know what to have to say until you write.  Writing comes from paying attention.  ~Don Murray

Writing is easy.  You sit at the typewriter and open a vein.  ~Red Smith

Write what makes you happy.  ~O.Henry

I write to hold what I find in my life in my hands and to declare it a treasure…significance cannot be found, it must be grown.  ~Lucy Calkins, 1988

It is an illusion that writers live more significant lives than nonwriters; the truth is, writers are just more in the habit of finding the significance that there is in their lives.  ~Lucy Calkins, 1988

What I like in a good author is not what he says, but what he whispers.  ~Logan Pearsall Smith, "All Trivia," Afterthoughts, 1931

The act of putting pen to paper encourages pause for thought, this in turn makes us think more deeply about life, which helps us regain our equilibrium.  ~Norbet Platt

The time to begin writing an article is when you have finished it to your satisfaction.  By that time you begin to clearly and logically perceive what it is you really want to say.  ~Mark Twain

It is necessary to write, if the days are not to slip emptily by.  How else, indeed, to clap the net over the butterfly of the moment?  For the moment passes, it is forgotten; the mood is gone; life itself is gone.  That is where the writer scores over his fellows:  he catches the changes of his mind on the hop.  ~Vita Sackville-West

I'm not a very good writer, but I'm an excellent rewriter.  ~James Michener

Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart.  ~William Wordsworth

The pages are still blank, but there is a miraculous feeling of the words being there, written in invisible ink and clamoring to become visible.  ~Vladimir Nabakov

Don't tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.  ~Anton Chekhov

Easy reading is damn hard writing.  ~Nathaniel Hawthorne

The difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug.  ~Mark Twain

The story I am writing exists, written in absolutely perfect fashion, some place, in the air.  All I must do is find it, and copy it.  ~Jules Renard, "Diary," February 1895

I love writing.  I love the swirl and swing of words as they tangle with human emotions.  ~James Michener

If my doctor told me I had only six minutes to live, I wouldn't brood.  I'd type a little faster.  ~Isaac Asimov

I love being a writer.  What I can't stand is the paperwork.  ~Peter De Vries

A critic can only review the book he has read, not the one which the writer wrote.  ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook, 1960

Writing, I think, is not apart from living.  Writing is a kind of double living.  The writer experiences everything twice.  Once in reality and once in that mirror which waits always before or behind.  ~Catherine Drinker Bowen, Atlantic, December 1957

To me, the greatest pleasure of writing is not what it's about, but the inner music the words make.  ~Truman Capote, McCall's, November 1967

Write down the thoughts of the moment.  Those that come unsought for are commonly the most valuable.  ~Francis Bacon

It seems to me that those songs that have been any good, I have nothing much to do with the writing of them.  The words have just crawled down my sleeve and come out on the page.  ~Joan Baez

When something can be read without effort, great effort has gone into its writing.  ~Enrique Jardiel Poncela

When you are describing,
A shape, or sound, or tint;
Don't state the matter plainly,
But put it in a hint;
And learn to look at all things,
With a sort of mental squint.

~Charles Lutwidge Dodgson (Lewis Carroll)

The ablest writer is only a gardener first, and then a cook:  his tasks are, carefully to select and cultivate his strongest and most nutritive thoughts; and when they are ripe, to dress them, wholesomely, and yet so that they may have a relish.  ~Augustus William Hare and Julius Charles Hare, Guesses at Truth, by Two Brothers, 1827

You write to communicate to the hearts and minds of others what's burning inside you.  And we edit to let the fire show through the smoke.  ~Arthur Polotnik

Write your first draft with your heart.  Re-write with your head.  ~From the movie Finding Forrester

Writing is both mask and unveiling.  ~E.B. White

There's only one person who needs a glass of water oftener than a small child tucked in for the night, and that's a writer sitting down to write.  ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook, 1966

The good writers touch life often.  ~Ray Bradbury                                                                                 

There are thousands of thoughts lying within a man that he does not know till he takes up the pen and writes.  ~William Makepeace Thackeray

It's important to nurture your image of what's possible.  We can only create what we can imagine.  ~Lucille Clifton 

The main thing to remember as you write is that you are the boss of your writing.  ~Lucy Calkins