And if you are honest about the words coming out of your characters' mouths, you'll find that you've let yourself in for a fair amount of criticism.
They had become a fixed star in the shifting firmament of the high school's relationships, the acknowledged Romeo and Juliet. And she knew with sudden hatefulness that there was one couple like them in every white suburban high school in America.
Good writing is often about letting go of fear and affectation. Affectation itself, beginning with the need to define some sorts of writing as 'good' and other sorts as 'bad' is fearful behavior.
Do you need someone to make you a paper badge with the word WRITER on it before you can believe you are one? God I hope not.
Above, the stars shone hard and bright, sparks struck off the dark skin of the universe.
I write about things that scare me. I've never written a snake story in my life. I myself have never written a story about snakes because they don't scare me. I write about rats because they scare the hell out of me.
Any word you have to hunt for in a thesaurus is the wrong word. There are no exceptions to this rule.
It's strange how pain marks our faces, and makes us look like family.
I am the literary equivalent of a Big Mac and fries.
We fall from womb to tomb, from one blackness and toward another, remembering little of the one and knowing nothing of the other ... except through faith.
Stories are like relics, part of an undiscovered preexisting world. The writer's job is to use the tools in his or her toolbox to get as much of each one out of the ground intact as possible.
The sun was a molten coin burning a circle in the low-hanging overcast, surrounded by a fairy-ring of moisture.
If being a kid is about learning how to live, then being a grown-up is about learning how to die.
My mother was a reader, and she read to us. She read us Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde when I was six and my brother was eight; I never forgot it.
You want to remember that while you're judging the book, the book is also judging you.
It didnÂ´t occur to me until later that thereÂ´s another truth, very simple: greed in a good cause is still greed.
The low bird is not picked tenderly out of the dust by its fellows; rather, it is dispatched quickly and without mercy.
Let evil wait for the day on which it must fall.
I never saw any of my dad's stories. My mother said he had piles and piles of manuscripts.
They had discovered one could grow as hungry for light as for food.
Nobody likes to see a stupid guy wise up.
There are books full of great writing that don't have very good stories. Read sometimes for the story... don't be like the book-snobs who won't do that. Read sometimes for the words--the language. Don't be like the play-it-safers who won't do that. But when you find a book that has both a good story
Hope is a good thing - maybe the best thing, and no good thing ever dies
A little arrogance (or even a lot) isn't such a bad thing, although your mother undoubtedly told you different. Mine did. "Pride goeth before a fall, Stephen", she said... and then I found out - right around the age that is 19 x 2 - that eventually you fall down, anyway.
You cannot hope to sweep someone else away by the force of your writing until it has been done to you.
She felt like someone who drowns remembering what it was like to still be on the boat, so calm and at ease, so carelessly safe
I'm having a magenta day. Not just red, but magenta!
Because who would ever want to get close to another person if they knew how hard the letting-go part was? In your heart they only die a little at a time, don't they? Like a plant when you go away on a trip and forget to ask a neighbor to poke in once in awhile with the old watering-can, and its so s
If you have given up your heart ... you have already lost. A heartless creature is a loveless creature, and a loveless creature is a beast.
It was as hysterical as a woman having a hot flash.