Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Writing Is Like Religion...

“Writing is like religion. Every man who feels the call must work out his own salvation. I might add that while many are called, few are chosen.

“Many beginners think that if they can acquire style, the fight is won; but style without ideas is as useless as an edge tool without material to carve. On the other hand many men who have ideas think they can write acceptably without serving an apprenticeship. They must learn how to use the tools of their trade.
“Given talent for it a man must prepare himself for writing as he would for any profession, by study and practice. Men do not expect to leap over night into the practice of either of these professions . . . I know of none that involves more drudgery and hard work during the years of preparation, or that requires more continuous effort to maintain a once-won place with the public. On every story that a writer publishes there is a plebiscite to determine whether he shall be encouraged to continue. Past performance avails little with the reading public. Rather, it makes it more critical and exciting. A writer’s reputation always depends on his next story.”

--Horace Lorimer, quoted in Adventures in Interviewing, 1919, p 57

3 Comments:

Anonymous Vicki said...

Hey Tricia. I mentioned your quotes at my place today--hope you don't mind:-)

1:17 PM  
Blogger Tricia Goyer said...

Mind? Not at all. Thanks so much!

2:47 PM  
Blogger Jim Thompson said...

Another way in which writing is like religion: to its devotees it is the very breath of life. I find myself in the curious position of loving to write, but struggling for ideas. Actually, my mind is always working, but my internal editor automatically quashes my thoughts as unworthy of development.

4:21 PM  

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