Sage Advice about Writing

I will try to cram these paragraphs full of facts and give them a weight and shape no greater than that of a cloud of blue butterflies. -Brendan Gill, Here at the New Yorker(1975)

The confidence of ignorant youth seeps slowly, slowly away and to our astonishment no confidence of sapient age comes surging in to take its place. -Brendan Gill, Here at the New Yorker(1975)

When I was writing it was necessary for me to read after I had written. If you kept thinking about it, you would lose the thing that you were writing before you could go on with it the next day. It was necessary to get exercise, to be tired in the body, and it was very good to make love with whom you loved. That was better than anything. But afterwards, when you were empty, it was necessary to read in order not to think or worry about your work until you could do it again. I had learned already never to empty the well of my writing, but always to stop when there was still something there in the deep part of the well, and let it refill at night from the springs that fed it. -Ernest Hemingway, A Moveable Feast(1964)

Do not worry. You have always written before and you will write now. All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence that you know. -Ernest Hemingway, A Moveable Feast (1964)

A master in the art of living draws no sharp distinction between his work and his play; his labor and his leisure; his mind and his body; his education and his recreation. He hardly knows which is which. He simply pursues his vision of excellence through whatever he is doing, and leaves others to determine whether he is working or playing. To himself, he always appears to be doing both. -L. P. Jacks, Education Through Recreation (1932)