The unvoiced thoughts and ideas of a septegenarian.



Over time I have collected some quotes about the craft of writing which I think are worth sharing with others who write. It’s questionable whether to call writing a craft, an art, a talent  or an obsession but that is another matter.

“Writing is a journey into memory and the soul . . . after a few months without writing I fear going deaf, not being able to hear the silence.”  Isabel Allende

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

“When you make music or write it’s really your job to have mind-blowing, irresponsible, condomless sex with whatever idea it is you’re writing about.” Lady Gaga

“Minds so small you could put them in a gnat’s navel with room left over for two caraway seeds and an agent’s heart.” Fred Allen

“Writers will go to stupefying lengths to get the infernal roar of words out of their skulls and onto paper.”  Barbara Kingsolver

“Better to write for yourself and have no public, than to write for the public and have no self.”  Cyril Connolly

“There are many reasons why novelists write – but they all have one thing in common: a need to create an alternative world.” John Fowles

“If you ask me what I came to do in this world, I, an artist, will answer you, I am here to live out loud.” Emile Zola

“It’s tougher than yak jerky in January, but as any creative person will tell  you, there are days when there’s absolutely nothing sweeter than creating something from nothing.” Richard Krzemien

“Detail makes the difference between boring and terrific writing . . .  As a writer, words are your paint. Use all the colors.” Rhys Alexander 

“I am the literary equivalent of a Big Mac and Fries.”   Stephen King.

“If  you have any young friends who aspire to be a writer, the second best thing you can do is to present them with The Elements of Style.  The best thing  you can do is to shoot them while they’re still happy.” Dorothy Parker

And finally, my favorite quote about writing:

“It is a delicious thing to write, to be no longer yourself but to move in an entire universe of your own creating. Today, for instance, as man and woman, both lover and mistress, I rode in a forest on an autumn afternoon under the yellow leaves, and I was also the horses, the leaves, the wind,  the words my people uttered….”  Gustave Flaubert

Which one really screams at you?

Julie Rose





          This verse is dedicated to all writers, whether of fiction or poetry, who struggle mightily to find the right words every time they sit down to write.   The right words don’t come swooping down, unbidden, and land just where a writer wants them on a page.  They play hide-and-seek; they elude the writer; they challenge him.  Only the best of writers can find them 100% of the time.

          Sometimes the writer depends on Webster or Roget to help him out. Sometime he searches for what others have had to say about his subject. Sometimes he tries half a dozen words before deciding which to use. And sometimes he crushes the paper into a ball, throws it into a wastebasket and goes for a walk or pours himself  healthy dose of Jack Daniels.   

          Despite their elusiveness writers happily face the challenge of ferreting the right words out of their corners. It’s a game writers must play. They’ve been roped in – there’s no choice, no escape.


In vain do I search for honeyed words;

Melodious, thoughtful, and warm.

Metaphors, similes, hidden from me.

If I try to write of hate and desertion

Rancor, and two-timing souls

I’ve nothing with which to compare.

Nor can I convey the feelings evoked

When writing of friendship and love.

Elusive the words that picture their spirit,

Fleeting, skybound, hidden in clouds.

Wispy are they to capture in prose or verse,

To write of a loved one, a worthy friend,

 a lesson learned, a truth uncovered.

A challenge to my leaky pen.

Yet can I write of trees and tulips,

Describe gardens in bloom,

Sand castles and sailboats.

Where are the words that evoke

smiles, delight, understanding

When I try to paint pictures of anger or peace?

I search long, dig deep, for words

That  do not betray my intent.

With envy, regret, I face the truth

No Shakespeare, Steinbeck,

Michener, Allende

Nor Plato  am I.


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Julie Rose


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