Jul 25, 2015

Motivation through quotes

by Cassie Shiels

     We all have different types of motivation. But often it boils down to this: we have a story that we just have to write. A story that we can't let stay stuck in our minds. We do lots of different things to help our motivation from conferences, books, articles, goals… etc.
     But I find it is also helpful if I have motivational quotes while I write. The quotes that I really like, I have taped to the wall by my desk so that even during writing time I can look up at those quotes and be reminded of things I feel are important without having to walk away from what I am doing. There are many different quotes out there to fit every writer's need, and I am sure many of you might have a quote or two lying around the house, or at your writing place, too. I have had different quotes at different times to fit my needs.
     Right now, since I am currently writing the first draft of my next novel, this quote hangs on my wall, and HAS helped when I get the sudden urge to start rewriting something. Or when the sneaky thought creeps into my mind of "how about I start at the beginning again and make it better before I finish the end? That will be okay." (And it is, if you really feel that is the right path for you.) BUT I wanted to finish this draft first before I got sucked into the rewriting phase, so this quote has been really helpful. I am not sure who said it.
"The first draft is just you telling yourself the story!" I added, "Keep going!"
     I can go back and add in better descriptions and choose different words later. Right now I need to see what this story is and how it will unfold, so that quote has been keeping me on task.
     The other quote I want to share with you has been helpful when I am trying to decide how I want to write a scene, how much of it I want to go into, etc. This quote has been really helpful to me.
"You don't want to give your readers information, you want to give them experiences." (It's from the book: Self editing for fiction writers.)
     Right after I read that quote, I start thinking, okay, show don't tell. It has helped me refocus my writing.
     Now these two quotes have been my best pals lately, but I am sure there are many great ones out there that many writers could benefit from. If you have a great writing quote that has or is helping you, feel free to post it in the comments. Who knows? Maybe your favorite quote will go up on another author's wall and really help them with their writing!


  1. Nice post, Cassie. Thanks for sharing those great quotes. One of my favorites was shared by a past ANWA member..."Just write the darn book."

    1. Kari, that quote has motivated me a time or too, as well. Thanks for the reminder!


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