background preloader

Famous Advice on Writing: The Collected Wisdom of Great Writers

Famous Advice on Writing: The Collected Wisdom of Great Writers
By Maria Popova By popular demand, I’ve put together a periodically updated reading list of all the famous advice on writing presented here over the years, featuring words of wisdom from such masters of the craft as Kurt Vonnegut, Susan Sontag, Henry Miller, Stephen King, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Susan Orlean, Ernest Hemingway, Zadie Smith, and more. Please enjoy. Jennifer Egan on Writing, the Trap of Approval, and the Most Important Discipline for Aspiring Writers “You can only write regularly if you’re willing to write badly… Accept bad writing as a way of priming the pump, a warm-up exercise that allows you to write well.” The Effortless Effort of Creativity: Jane Hirshfield on Storytelling, the Art of Concentration, and Difficulty as a Consecrating Force of Creative Attention “In the wholeheartedness of concentration, world and self begin to cohere.

Related:  StoryInteresting Stuff

How To Encourage Kids To Read & Write Every Day National Literacy Trust provides tips to parents to develop children's reading skills Helping a child to develop their reading skills and love literacy is a real challenge, but it’s also one of the biggest and most rewarding responsibilities of parents. Reading opens a child’s eyes to the world around them, opens their imagination to worlds they have never experienced, and reveals opportunities for them that are so often closed to people that struggle to read and write. There are many different barriers to literacy; poverty and gender inequality may stop people from being given the opportunity to learn, while geography – simply living too far from local schools or libraries – makes it too difficult for many to reach the resources that are available. Don’t make time a barrier for your child.

Nietzsche’s 10 Rules for Writers, Penned in a Letter to His Lover and Muse More than a century before Elmore Leonard’s ten rules of writing inspired similar sets of commandments by Neil Gaiman, Zadie Smith, and Margaret Atwood, one of humanity’s greatest minds did precisely that. Between August 8 and August 24 of 1882, Friedrich Nietzsche set down ten stylistic rules of writing in a series of letters to the Russian-born writer, intellectual, and psychoanalyst Lou Andreas-Salomé — the first female psychoanalyst, who corresponded with Freud about human nature, and an extraordinary woman celebrated as the “muse of Europe’s fin-de-siècle thinkers and artists,” to whom Rainer Maria Rilke would later come to write breathtaking love letters. Smitten with 21-year-old Andreas-Salomé, Nietzsche decided to make her not only his intellectual protégé, but also his wife, allegedly proposing marriage at only their second meeting earlier that year. Collected under the heading “Toward the Teaching of Style,” they read: These commandments are obviously rather aphoristic.

5 Timeless Books of Insight on Fear and the Creative Process by Maria Popova From Monet to Tiger Woods, or why creating rituals and breaking routines don’t have to be conflicting notions. “Creativity is like chasing chickens,” Christoph Niemann once said. But sometimes it can feel like being chased by chickens — giant, angry, menacing chickens. Whether you’re a writer, designer, artist or maker of anything in any medium, you know the creative process can be plagued by fear, often so paralyzing it makes it hard to actually create.

En Dash, Em Dash, and Hyphen ~ CuteWriting We have three types of dashes in use: The hyphen, En Dash, and the Em Dash. In this post, we will see how to use them all correctly. Hyphen (-) The hyphen is the minus key in Windows-based keyboards. This is a widely used punctuation mark. Hyphen should not be mistaken for a dash. UEFA Women's Euro 2017 Skip to main content Close advanced search Advanced search Browse your search results by sector: Living List (or Bucket List) Subscribe to the newsletter and receive a free ebook! Not only will you receive 10 Tips to Improve Your Blogging, but regular updates on writing and news. Your information will never be shared or sold to a 3rd party.

25 Ways To Fight Your Story’s Mushy Middle For me, the middle is the hardest part of writing. It’s easy to get the stallions moving in the beginning — a stun gun up their asses gets them stampeding right quick. I don’t have much of a problem with endings, either; you get to a certain point and the horses are worked up into a mighty lather and run wildly and ineluctably toward the cliff’s edge. But the middle, man, the motherfucking middle. It’s like being lost in a fog, wandering the wasteland tracts. And I can’t be the only person with this problem: I’ve read far too many books that seem to lose all steam in the middle.

Audiobooks and the Return of Storytelling Photo STANFORD, Calif. — THE ferns under my oak trees evoke moments from “The Great Gatsby” for me. I read the book many years ago, but I listened to it last summer while planting 50 polypodium californicas and 50 festuca idahoensis in the dappled light beneath my oaks. Now, when I look at them, I think about that last awful accident, the yellow Rolls-Royce screaming past the repair shop, and what F. Scott Fitzgerald’s narrator called Gatsby’s extraordinary gift for hope. The sale of audiobooks has skyrocketed in recent years.

We Call That Failure Art: Tony Kushner's Speech to Writers The following is adapted from a speech the author gave at the Whiting Writers’ Awards on October 21, 2013. I said yes to doing this speech tonight for three reasons. The first is, of course, because the emergence of writers of talent, integrity, distinction, wit, vision, and imagination is always a cause for celebration, and, in these dark times, no opportunity to celebrate should be allowed to slip by. The second reason is that I felt I was long overdue to repay this organization for its great kindness twenty-three years ago, when I got the news that the Whiting Foundation, of which I’d never heard, had decided that I was an Emerging Writer—a Writer, mind you, not an Emerging Playwright, and, even better, an Emerging Writer worthy of a very handsome check. Uncharacteristically for me, I didn’t tell anyone I was a Whiting Foundation Emerging Writer until the news was published in the New York Times.

500 Words 2017: word play in children’s stories Written by lexicographer Roz Combley There’s nothing like the real thing I was recently lucky enough to analyse the Oxford Corpus, a 55-million-word collection of children’s writing from the BBC Radio 2’s 500 Words story competition. UNSW Psychology Clinic As part of the focus in evidence-based clinical practice, the UNSW Psychology Clinic collaborates with various researchers to deepen the knowledge base relating to clinical psychology and human experiences. The research projects that the clinic is currently involved in are as below: Appraisal Processes and Emotional Responses in Generalised Anxiety Disorder General Writing If you are having trouble locating a specific resource please visit the search page or the Site Map. The Writing Process These OWL resources will help you with the writing process: pre-writing (invention), developing research questions and outlines, composing thesis statements, and proofreading. While the writing process may be different for each person and for each particular assignment, the resources contained in this section follow the general work flow of pre-writing, organizing, and revising. For resources and examples on specific types of writing assignments, please go to our Common Writing Assignments area. Academic Writing