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Weekly Quote #8

“Writing a book is a horrible, exhausting struggle, like a long bout of some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven on by some demon whom one can neither resist nor understand.” (George Orwell)

This week I went back to Writer’s Digest for some more inspiration, and it’s simply too tempting to post another quote (fine, two)! I know I posted the link a few weeks back but I also know from personal experience that not everyone follows links, and it would be a shame if we missed out on these two!

I chose this one because I understand it perfectly. I love writing, but I also feel like small kinky demons are whispering to me half of the time, planning how to torture me until I give in and write after all. I know I can’t resist and so do the voices in my head, so why bother fooling anyone? Writing a book is hard, exhausting work, and often painful for several reasons, but I can’t stay away so I know I’m driven by some demon!

“Writing is not necessarily something to be ashamed of, but do it in private and wash your hands afterwards.” (Robert A. Heinlein)

I feel like I’m breaking my own self-imposed rules by posting two quotes this week, but I couldn’t resist. And you’re probably rolling your eyes at me already for going back to the same page again, so I didn’t want to make you roll your eyes even harder a third time. This is better for everyone involved, trust me.

This quote reminds me of all the odd looks I get when I say that I write fantasy, or all the people who ask us fantasy writers (or any writer) what our real job is. Like writing isn’t hard enough? Writing fantasy, or any book, seems to be something that most people see as an easy, almost lazy excuse not to get a ‘real’ job. To those people I say: Write one, go through all the edits and preparation and ups and downs, and then we’ll have another chat. Doing this writing-thing isn’t as easy as you might think, and it’s nothing to be ashamed of! Be proud, fellow writers!


For more weekly quotes, check out this page here.

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  1. I think people who say, “Get a real job,” are referring to physical labor as if the physical is all that is real.

    But I say to this that what is in your mind is real and what you feel is real. Therefore, the mental labor and emotional labor involved in writing are, themselves, real. Writing takes a lot out of you, mentally and emotionally, and this is not something that can be dismissed in the absence of physical labor.

Get a tea and a cookie, and let's chat!

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