90 Writing Quotes to Get You Writing Your Story

Since the invention of writing, this creative outlet has been one of the most beautiful ways for a person to express themselves, as you’ll see in the writing quotes below.

The writing quotes below will inspire you to begin your own writing journey.

Whether we are experiencing a change in our lives, have a story on our minds, or have a feeling we need to convey, writing is a chance for us to say what we feel without judgment.

You don’t need to be a famous author or publish a book to enjoy the art of this ancient form of expression.

Writing has given us the ability to relate to others, say what we cannot say, and learn about topics that we may have otherwise not experienced for ourselves.

Writing can take you to another place, another time, and another space.

Without writing, we would not have the amazing stories we have today, passed down from ages ago.

If you’ve been experiencing some writer’s block lately, then these writing quotes can help.

Writing Quotes For Beginners

1. “Write while the heat is in you. … The writer who postpones the recording of his thoughts uses an iron which has cooled to burn a hole with.” — Henry David Thoreau

Writing Quotes For Beginners

2. “I would advise anyone who aspires to a writing career that before developing his talent, he would be wise to develop a thick hide.” — Harper Lee

writing quotes that developing

3. “Stop aspiring and start writing. If you’re writing, you’re a writer. Write like you’re a goddamn death row inmate and the governor is out of the country and there’s no chance for a pardon. Write like you’re clinging to the edge of a cliff, white knuckles, on your last breath, and you’ve got just one last thing to say, like you’re a bird flying over us and you can see everything, and please, for God’s sake, tell us something that will save us from ourselves.” ― Alan W. Watts

writing quotes about God

4. “If you want to be a writer-stop talking about it and sit down and write!” ― Jackie Collins

writing quotes about write

5. “You don’t start out writing good stuff. You start out writing crap and thinking it’s good stuff, and then gradually, you get better at it. That’s why I say one of the most valuable traits is persistence.” ― Octavia Butler 

Relatable writing quotes

Writing Quotes to Help you Create your Best Work

6. I kept always two books in my pocket, one to read, one to write in.” — Robert Louis Stevenson

writing quotes on book

7. “You should write because you love the shape of stories and sentences and the creation of different words on a page. Writing comes from reading, and reading is the finest teacher of how to write.” —  Annie Proulx

writing quotes about teacher

8. “First, forget inspiration; habit is more dependable. Habit will sustain you whether you’re inspired or not. Habit will help you finish and polish your stories.” ― Octavia Butler

More writing quotes

9. “It is my ambition to say in ten sentences what others say in a whole book.” ― Friedrich Nietzsche

writing quotes about ambition

10. “Everyone is born creative; everyone is given a box of crayons in kindergarten. Then, when you hit puberty, they take the crayons away and replace them with dry, uninspiring books on algebra, history, etc. Being suddenly hit years later with the ‘creative bug’ is just a wee voice telling you, ‘I’d like my crayons back, please.” ― Hugh MacLeod

writing quotes about voice

11. “Everybody is talented because everybody who is human has something to express.” ― Brenda Ueland

writing quotes about human

12. “The beautiful part of writing is that you don’t have to get it right the first time, unlike, say, a brain surgeon.” ― Robert Cormier

writing quotes on beautiful

13. “Just write every day of your life. Read intensely. Then, see what happens. Most of my friends who are put on that diet have very pleasant careers.” — Ray Bradbury

writing quotes about life

Writing Quotes about Editing

14. “You can always edit a bad page. You can’t edit a blank page.” ― Jodi Picoult

Writing Quotes about Editing

15. “When your story is ready for rewrite, cut it to the bone. Get rid of every ounce of excess fat. This is going to hurt; revising a story down to the bare essentials is always a little like murdering children, but it must be done.” — Stephen King (see more Stephen King quotes and sayings)

writing quotes that children

16. “Don’t bend; don’t water it down; don’t try to make it logical; don’t edit your own soul according to the fashion. Rather, follow your most intense obsessions mercilessly.” — Franz Kafka (see more quotes from Franz Kafka)

writing quotes on soul

17. “Read, read, read. Read everything – trash, classics, good and bad, and see how they do it. Just like a carpenter who works as an apprentice and studies the master. Read! You’ll absorb it. Then write. If it’s good, you’ll find out. If it’s not, throw it out of the window.” ― William Faulkner

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Other writing quotes

 18. “The first draft of anything is shit.” ― Ernest Hemingway

writing quotes that the first draft of anything is shit

19. “If the word doesn’t exist, invent it; but first be sure it doesn’t exist.” ― Charles Baudelaire

Inspirational writing quotes

20. “Not a wasted word. This has been a main point to my literary thinking all my life.” ― Hunter S. Thompson

Wise and inspirational writing quotes

If you’re enjoying these quotes, make sure to check out our collection of Hunter S. Thompson quotes from journalist and author.

Writing Quotes on Persistence

21. “Stay faithful to the stories in your head.” ― Paula Hawkins

Writing Quotes on Persistence

22. “You fail only if you stop writing.” ― Ray Bradbury

writing quotes on you fail only if you stop writing

23. “A small daily task, if it be really daily, will beat the labours of a spasmodic Hercules.” ― Anthony Trollope

Amazing writing quotes

24. “You either have to write or you shouldn’t be writing. That’s all.” ― Joss Whedon

Random writing quotes

25. “Everywhere I go I’m asked if I think the university stifles writers. My opinion is that they don’t stifle enough of them. There’s many a best-seller that could have been prevented by a good teacher.” ― Flannery O’Connor

Top writing quotes

26. “Focus more on your desire than on your doubt, and the dream will take care of itself.” ― Mark Twain

27. “A professional writer is an amateur who didn’t quit.” — Richard Bach

28. “The hard part about writing a novel is finishing it.” — Ernest Hemingway

Writing Quotes on Why You Should Write

29. “There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.” ― Maya Angelou

30. “We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.” ― Anaïs Nin

31. If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” ― Toni Morrison

32. Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.” ― Benjamin Franklin

33. The purpose of a writer is to keep civilization from destroying itself.” ― Albert Camus

34. “Why did I write? Because I found life unsatisfactory.” ― Tennessee Williams

35. “Ideas aren’t magical; the only tricky part is holding on to one long enough to get it written down. ” ― Lynn Abbey

36. “If you want to change the world, pick up your pen and write.” ― Martin Luther

37. “If people cannot write well, they cannot think well, and if they cannot think well, others will do their thinking for them.” ― George Orwell

38. “I write for the same reason I breathe – because if I didn’t, I would die.” – Isaac Asimov

39. “If a nation loses its storytellers, it loses its childhood.” — Peter Handke

Writing Quotes on How to Write

40. “If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.” ― Stephen King

41. The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one will do.” ― Thomas Jefferson

42. “There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.” ― W. Somerset Maugham

43. “Indeed, learning to write may be part of learning to read. For all I know, writing comes out of a superior devotion to reading.” ― Eudora Welty

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44. “Concentrate on what you want to say to yourself and your friends. Follow your inner moonlight; don’t hide the madness. You say what you want to say when you don’t care who’s listening.” ― Allen Ginsberg

45. “To write well, express yourself like the common people, but think like a wise man.” ― Aristotle

46. “If a writer stops observing he is finished. Experience is communicated by small details intimately observed.” ― Ernest Hemingway

47. “Get it down. Take chances. It may be bad, but it’s the only way you can do anything good.” ― William Faulkner

48. “The best work that anybody ever writes is the work that is on the verge of embarrassing him, always.” ― Arthur Miller

49. “No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader.” ― Robert Frost

50. “Write. Rewrite. When not writing or rewriting, read. I know of no shortcuts.” — Larry L. King

More writing quotes and sayings

51. “Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on.” ― Louis L’Amour

52. “There is no real ending. It’s just the place where you stop the story.” ― Frank Herbert

53. A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.” ― Thomas Mann

54. “Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart.” ― William Wordsworth

55. “There is something delicious about writing the first words of a story. You never quite know where they’ll take you.” ― Beatrix Potter

56. A word after a word after a word is power.” ― Margaret Atwood

57. “A person is a fool to become a writer. His only compensation is absolute freedom. He has no master except his own soul, and that, I am sure, is why he does it.” ― Roald Dahl

58. Writing is the only thing that when I do it, I don’t feel I should be doing something else.” ― Gloria Steinem

59. “Writing is like breathing, it’s possible to learn to do it well, but the point is to do it no matter what.” ― Julia Cameron

More Writing Quotes for your next Essay

60. “Writing is like making love. Don’t worry about the orgasm, just concentrate on the process.” ― Isabel Allende

61. “Read a thousand books, and your words will flow like a river.” ― Lisa See

62. “If the book is true, it will find an audience that is meant to read it.” ― Wally Lamb

63. “I think all writing is a disease. You can’t stop it.” ― William Carlos Williams

64. “Every secret of a writer’s soul, every experience of his life, every quality of his mind, is written large in his works.” ― Virginia Woolf

65. “Everybody walks past a thousand story ideas every day. The good writers are the ones who see five or six of them. Most people don’t see any.” ― Orson Scott

66. “People say, ‘What advice do you have for people who want to be writers?’ I say, they don’t really need advice, they know they want to be writers, and they’re gonna do it. Those people who know that they really want to do this and are cut out for it, they know it.” ― R.L. Stine

67. “I believe myself that a good writer doesn’t really need to be told anything except to keep at it.” ― Chinua Achebe

68. “The counterfeit innovator is wildly self-confident. The real one is scared to death.” ― Steven Pressfield

69. “I can shake off everything as I write; my sorrows disappear, my courage is reborn.” ― Anne Frank

70. “And by the way, everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.” ― Sylvia Plath

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Writing Quotes and Sayings By Famous Authors

71. “It took me fifteen years to discover I had no talent for writing, but I couldn’t give it up because by that time I was too famous.” — Robert Benchley

72. “One thing that helps is to give myself permission to write badly. I tell myself that I’m going to do my five or ten pages no matter what and that I can always tear them up the following morning if I want. I’ll have lost nothing—writing and tearing up five pages would leave me no further behind than if I took the day off.” — Lawrence Block

73. “I’ve always believed in writing without a collaborator because where two people are writing the same book, each believes he gets all the worry and only half the royalties.” — Agatha Christie

74. “I try to create sympathy for my characters, then turn the monsters loose.” — Stephen King

75. “Writing, to me, is simply thinking through my fingers.” — Isaac Asimov

76. “Remember: Plot is no more than footprints left in the snow after your characters have run by on their way to incredible destinations.” — Ray Bradbury

77. “I always wrote. I wrote from when I was 12. That was therapeutic for me in those days. I wrote things to get them out of feeling them and onto paper. So writing in a way saved me, kept me company.” — Carrie Fisher

78. “As a writer, you should not judge, you should understand.” ― Ernest Hemingway

79. “Write something that’s worth fighting over. Because that’s how you change things. That’s how you create art.” — Jeff Goins

80. “This is how you do it: You sit down at the keyboard and you put one word after another until it’s done. It’s that easy, and that hard.” — Neil Gaiman

More quotes to get your writing juices flowing

81. “To defend what you’ve written is a sign that you are alive.” — William Zinsser

82. “Words can be like x-rays if you use them properly—they’ll go through anything. You read, and you’re pierced.” — Aldous Huxley

83. “Writing is easy. Just sit down and open a vein.” — Red Barber

84. “The road to hell is paved with adverbs.” — Stephen King

85. “You never have to change anything you got up in the middle of the night to write.” — Saul Bellow

86. “All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence that you know.” — Ernest Hemingway

87. “Imagination is like a muscle. I found out that the more I wrote, the bigger it got.” — Philip José Farmer

88. “You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.” — Jack London

89. “All readers come to fiction as willing accomplices to your lies. Such is the basic goodwill contract made the moment we pick up a work of fiction.” — Steve Almond

90. “Everybody else is working to change, persuade, tempt, and control them. The best readers come to fiction to be free of all that noise.” — Philip Roth

Which of these writing quotes resonated with you best?

Remember, writing can be a profession, but it can also just be a fun hobby to enjoy in your free time.

You can write in a journal, you can write a letter, you can write a story, or you can write a poem.

There’s no wrong way to go about it.

That being said, sometimes people feel self-conscious or hesitant to write what’s on their minds and in their hearts.

But it’s important to never give up or listen to what others think.

These writing quotes, which come from some of history’s greatest wordsmiths, can help you inspire you to begin your own writing journey.  

What’s your biggest takeaway from these writing quotes and sayings?

Do you have any other favorite quotes to add?

Let us know in the comment section below.

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