Ms. Bookish

Jan 27

“From a very early age, perhaps the age of five or six, I knew that when I grew up I should be a writer. Between the ages of about seventeen and twenty-four I tried to abandon this idea, but I did so with the consciousness that I was outraging my true nature and that sooner or later I should have to settle down and write books.” — George Orwell, from Why We Write, by Meredith Maran

Jan 21

Happiness is like a butterfly. The more you chase it, the more it will elude you. But if you turn your attention to other things, it will come and sit softly on your shoulder. - Henry David Thoreau (via Lifehacks)

Happiness is like a butterfly. The more you chase it, the more it will elude you. But if you turn your attention to other things, it will come and sit softly on your shoulder. - Henry David Thoreau (via Lifehacks)

Jan 12

“… brainstorming helps take the pressure off you, the kind of pressure that comes from trying to imagine too much of your story at once, the kind of pressure that makes you freeze up and give up.” — James Brown, “Journaling - A Stepping Stone”, in WRITERS AND THEIR NOTEBOOKS

Jan 10

“… though she was not beautiful her calmness had the magnetic pull of beauty - a stillness so powerful that the molecules realigned themselves around her when she came into a room.” — THE GOLDFINCH, by Donna Tartt

Jan 09

“… to live in such a world was to live with the shadow of death hovering over your shoulder at every moment. To live was to be not dead yet.” — THE GHOST MAP, by Steven Johnson

“The postal service was famously efficient, closer to e-mail than the appropriately nicknamed “snail mail” of today; a letter posted at nine a.m. would reliably find its way to its recipient across town by noon. (The papers of the day were filled with aggrieved letters to the editor complaining about a mailing that took all of six hours to find its destination.)” — THE GHOST MAP, by Steven Johnson

Jan 04

That’s the great secret of creativity. You treat ideas like cats: you make them follow you.

Dec 18

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Nov 23

“ll those years I was working, doing journalism and fiction, I would come home from a day of journalism, take a nap, and be able to get two or three hours of fiction writing in. The replenishing thing that comes with a nap — you end up with two mornings in a day.” — From an interview with journalist and novelist Pete Hamill, in Reading, Walking and More Reading for Writer - NYTimes.com

Oct 20

“Fantasy novelist Neil Gaiman stresses the importance of a good name in describing the genesis of his American Gods protagonist. “There’s a magic to names, after all,” he says. “I knew his name [needed to be] descriptive. I tried calling him Lazy, but he didn’t seem to like that, and I called him Jack, and he didn’t like that any better. I took to trying every name I ran into on him for size, and he looked back at me from somewhere in my head unimpressed every time. It was like trying to name Rumpelstiltskin. He finally got his name from an Elvis Costello song … on Bespoke Songs, Lost Dogs, Detours and Rendezvous. It’s performed by Was (Not Was) and is the story of two men named Shadow and Jimmy. I … tried it on for size … ‘… Shadow stretched uncomfortably on his prison cot, and glanced across at the Wild Birds of North America wall calendar, with the days he’d been inside crossed off, and he counted the days until he got out.’ And once I had a name, I was ready to begin.”” — via Co.Create