Alec Nevala-Lee

Thoughts on art, creativity, and the writing life.

Posts Tagged ‘Irvin Faust

What is writing like?

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Irwin Shaw

Writing is like a contact sport, like football. Why do kids play football? They can get hurt on any play, can’t they? Yet they can’t wait until Saturday comes around so they can play on the high-school team, or the college team, and get smashed around. Writing is like that. You can get hurt, but you enjoy it.

Irwin Shaw

Writing a novel is like working on foreign policy. There are problems to be solved. It’s not all inspirational.

James M. Cain

Writing a novel is like living next door to a family that has just moved in. At first you just see the people coming and going, in and out of their house. After a while their habits become more familiar, and then one day you go in for coffee.

Rosemary Wells

William Styron

Writing a novel is like walking from Vladivostok to Madrid on your knees.

—Attributed to William Styron

Writing a novel is like living in a house. You rummage around in the cellar and the attic, and you can afford to screw up a couple of rooms because there are always others that will be better.

Irvin Faust

Writing a novel is like taking an examination on which your whole future depends.

May Sarton

C.S. Lewis

Writing is like driving sheep down a road. If there is any gate open to the left or the right the readers will most certainly go into it.

C.S. Lewis

Writing is like wrestling crocodiles. The better you do it, the easier it looks.

Harvey Bullock

Writing is like being a boxer. If you don’t want to get knocked down, you shouldn’t be in the game.

James Purdy

John Gregory Dunne

Writing is manual labor of the mind: a job, like laying pipe.

John Gregory Dunne

Writing is like diarrhea: it pipes off the things that are in a ferment.

Henry Green

Writing is like prostitution. First you do it for the love of it, then you do it for a few friends, and finally you do it for money.


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