Tuesday, January 2, 2018

12 Quotes to Inspire Your Writing Journey

by Cynthia Owens @EfficiencyAdict

It’s a brand new year, full of possibility and promise. We know that 2018 can be amazing, but how do we harness its potential? How do we make 2018 the year our writing grows and soars?

Some people start by choosing a word. They understand that focus is essential for any great endeavor, so they ponder and pray, picking one word to stir them as they work through the year.

Other writers choose a writing craft element. They spend twelve months studying voice, point of view, plotting, pacing, or description. By the end of the year they’ve plunged deep into that technical element and their writing is better for it.

Both of these approaches have merit, but I’d like to give you a third option—focusing on an inspirational quote.

Sometimes a quote has so much truth in it, I mull it over for days, pondering its nuances, stretching to grasp all its elements. Other times, the words that would help me are forgotten in the struggles of life. The only way I can keep them on my mind is by posting them beside my desk or in some other visible place.

Good quotes can inspire us, point us to new possibilities, and drive us forward. If you draw encouragement from quotes, perhaps these will help you.

12 Quotes to Inspire Your Writing
Below are twelve tips, reminders, and sage advice to encourage you on your writing path. You can use a different quote for each month or focus on one all year long. Only you know where you are on your writing journey. As you read these words of wisdom, see what resonates with you and consider where you most need to concentrate in 2018.

1. Do everything for the glory of God. ~1 Corinthians 10:31

2. Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on. ~ Louis L’Amour

3. Every first draft is perfect because all a first draft has to do is exist. ~Jane Smiley

4. Writers don’t just wait; they keep writing and submitting in equal measure. The more your focus is on what you’re producing, and not checking the email or snail-mail box, the more good writing you’ll eventually get done. ~Jordan Rosenfeld

5. You’ll never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily life. ~Anonymous

6. The beautiful part about writing is that you don’t have to get it right the first time, unlike, say, a brain surgeon. ~Robert Cormier

7. Be courageous and try to write in a way that scares you a little. ~Holley Gerth

8. Don’t forget—no one else sees the world the way you do, so no one else can tell the stories you have to tell. ~ Charles de Lint

9. Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass. ~Anton Chekhov

10. Good writing is remembering detail. Most people want to forget. Don’t forget things that were painful or embarrassing or silly. Turn them into a story that tells the truth. ~Paula Danzinger

11. Very few writers know what they are doing until they’ve done it. ~ Anne Lamott

12. Don’t be ‘a writer’. Be writing. ~William Faulkner

I hope these quotes inspire you to new writing heights in 2018.

If you’d like more information about choosing a word of the year, here’s an excellent article by Leigh Anne Wilkes.

What quote are you going to use to inspire your writing journey this year? I’d love to read your picks in the Comments section below.


Cynthia Owens is The Efficiency Addict, a technical trainer helping writers, speakers and small business owners work more effectively. She runs www.TheEfficiencyAddict.com, which specializes in computer training, business organization, career development and event coordination. 

Connect with Cynthia on Twitter and Pinterest.


  1. Foulkner's may be at the bottom of this list; nevertheless, it needs to be on the top of my personal list.

    Thanks, Cynthia, for these new year treasures to inspire writers to fulfill their calling and eventually hear, "Well done, good and faithful servant."

  2. I love quotes and these are all wonderful motivators for me! Thank you!

  3. All twelve quotes are great! Thank you, Cynthia. Happy New Year!

  4. Cynthia, these are great! I'm trudging through a ms, so #3 spoke to me...my first draft doesn't have to be perfect; it only has to exist. If I can keep reminding myself of that, I'd be able to move forward more quickly rather than constantly going back to revise, revise, revise. Ugh.

  5. Great quotes. They'll go straight to my journal.