Category: Quotable Quotes for Writers

Writing as a value-producing activity

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“In this knowledge economy, writing is the chief value-producing activity.”

Heard this at a business and technical writing seminar I “semi-attended” today. (I was out of the training venue for the most part of the day doing…something else.)

Something to chew on: that I actually produce something of value. Yay! Sometimes, I feel I just churn out trash. Thank God for editors. :)

Quote: A story is like a house

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“A story is not like a road to follow … it’s more like a house. You go inside and stay there for a while, wandering back and forth and settling where you like and discovering how the room and corridors relate to each other, how the world outside is altered by being viewed from these windows.

And you, the visitor, the reader, are altered as well by being in this enclosed space, whether it is ample and easy or full of crooked turns, or sparsely or opulently furnished.

You can go back again and again, and the house, the story, always contains more than you saw the last time.

It also has a sturdy sense of itself of being built out of its own necessity, not just to shelter or beguile you.” (2013 Nobel Prize in Literature laureate Alice Munro)

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Quote: Be reverent

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Photo by Tony P.

“In order to be a writer, you have to learn to be reverent. If not, why are you writing? Why are you here?

Think of reverence as awe, as presence in and openness to the world.

Think of those times when you’ve read prose or poetry that is presented in such a way that you have a fleeting sense of being startled by beauty or insight, by a glimpse into someone’s soul.

All of a sudden everything seems to fit together or at least to have some meaning for a moment. This is our goal as writers, I think; to help others have this sense of – please forgive me – wonder, of seeing things anew, things that can catch us off guard, that break in on our small, bordered worlds.

When this happens, everything feels more spacious.” (Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life)

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