Browsing category writing tips

anton chekhov. on truth.


“One must never lie. Art has this great specification: it simply does not tolerate falsehood. One can lie in love, politics, and medicine: and can mislead the public or even God; but there is absolutely no lying in art.” – Anton Chekhov

wednesday’s mailbox


Carve out a time to write and then ignore the writer’s block. Show up to write, even if nothing comes right away. When your body shows up to the page at the same time and place every day, eventually your mind — and your muse — will do the same. Graham Greene famously wrote 500

the complexity of human existence


“The major difference between Tolstoy and Flaubert is that Tolstoy worked from life, Flaubert from ideas—and in this instance, from a very poor idea, which was hatred of the bourgeoisie and of provincial life. Of the two men, Tolstoy had the larger heart, which gave him the greater appreciation of the complexity of human existence

the grotesque in southern fiction


“Whenever I’m asked why Southern writers particularly have a penchant for writing about freaks, I say it is because we are still able to recognize one. To be able to recognize a freak, you have to have some conception of the whole man, and in the South the general conception of man is still, in

bubbles


“It is worth mentioning, for future reference, that the creative power which bubbles so pleasantly in beginning a new book quiets down after a time, and one goes on more steadily. Doubts creep in. Then one becomes resigned. Determination not to give in, and the sense of an impending shape keep one at it more

damn


“Substitute “damn” every time you’re inclined to write “very;” your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.” ~Mark Twain

compulsion to write


I’m compulsive. And I deeply think that it has to be something very neurotic. And I’m not joking. . . . I don’t have to do anything. Nothing. I can just sit around. But, suddenly it starts, you see. This terrible feeling that I am just wasting my life, I’m useless, I’m no good. Now,

why she wrote


“I write entirely to find out what I’m thinking, what I’m looking at, what I see and what it means. What I want and what I fear.” – Joan Didion ———— If you had to have one job, for the rest of your life, and you had to do it for free…what would it be?