The trade of authorship is a violent, and indestructible obsession.
The pen is the tongue of the mind.
But words are things, and a small drop of ink, Falling like dew, upon a thought, produces That which makes thousands, perhaps millions, think.
We are the products of editing, rather than of authorship.
Writers, especially when they act in a body and with one direction, have great influence on the public mind.
Write to the mind and heart, and let the ear Glean after what it can.
Indeed, unless a man can link his written thoughts with the everlasting wants of men, so that they shall draw more from them as wells, there is no more immortality to the thoughts and feelings of the soul than to the muscles and bones.
He who writes prose builds his temple to Fame in rubble; he who writes verses builds it in granite. - Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer-Lytton, first Baron Lytton
The circumstance which gives authors an advantage above all these great masters, is this, that they can multiply their originals; or rather, can make copies of their works, to what number they please, which shall be as valuable as the originals themselves.
Too indolent to bear the toil of writing; I mean of writing well; I say nothing about quantity.
[Lat., Piger scribendi ferre laborem;
Scribendi recte, nam ut multum nil moror.]
The lover of letters loves power too.
He who writes distichs, wishes, I suppose, to please by brevity. But, tell me, of what avail is their brevity, when there is a whose book full of them?
A man starts upon a sudden, takes Pen, Ink, and Paper, and without ever having had a thought of it before, resolves within himself he will write a Book; he has no Talent at Writing, but he wants fifty Guineas.
A man of moderate Understanding, thinks he writes divinely: A man of good Understanding, thinks he writes reasonably.
Writings survive the years; it is by writings that you know Agamemnon, and those who fought for or against him.
[Lat., Scripta ferunt annos; scriptis Agamemnona nosti,
Et quisquis contra vel simul arma tulit.]
Whatever hath been written shall remain,
Nor be erased nor written o'er again;
The unwritten only still belongs to thee:
Take heed, and ponder well what that shall be.
I didn't really escape that gravity until I moved 300 miles south to go to college at 18, where authorship no longer seemed something liable to induce vengeful punishment.
The writer, like a priest, must be exempted from secular labor. His work needs a frolic health; he must be at the top of his condition.
There are three difficulties in authorship; to write any thing worth the publishing — to find honest men to publish it — and to get sensible men to read it.
There is probably no hell for authors in the next world - they suffer so much from critics and publishers in this.
Almost anyone can be an author; the business is to collect money and fame from this state of being.
The unhappy man, who once has trail'd a pen, Lives not to please himself, but other men; Is always drudging, wastes his life and blood, Yet only eats and drinks what you think good.
To write much, and to write rapidly, are empty boasts. The world desires to know what you have done, and not how you did it.
Knowledge is the foundation and source of good writing.
[Lat., Scibendi recte sapere est et principium et fons.]
Let it (what you have written) be kept back until the ninth year.
[Lat., Nonumque prematur in annum.]
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