Brain Pickings

Reads tagged with “writing”

Ursula K. Le Guin on Busyness and the Creative Life
Ursula K. Le Guin on Busyness and the Creative Life

In praise of the mundane, unquantifiable, impractical activities that feed creative work and fill life with meaning.

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Rachel Carson on Writing and the Loneliness of Creative Work
Rachel Carson on Writing and the Loneliness of Creative Work

“If you write what you yourself sincerely think and feel and are interested in… you will interest other people.”

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Jeanette Winterson on How Art and Storytelling Redeem Our Inner Lives
Jeanette Winterson on How Art and Storytelling Redeem Our Inner Lives

“Creative work bridges time because the energy of art is not time-bound… This makes our own death bearable.”

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The Doom and Glory of Knowing Who You Are: James Baldwin on the Empathic Rewards of Reading and What It Means to Be an Artist
The Doom and Glory of Knowing Who You Are: James Baldwin on the Empathic Rewards of Reading and What It Means to Be an Artist

“An artist is a sort of emotional or spiritual historian. His role is to make you realize the doom and glory of knowing who you are and what you are.”

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Polish Poet and Nobel Laureate Wisława Szymborska on the Creative Power of Uncertainty
Polish Poet and Nobel Laureate Wisława Szymborska on the Creative Power of Uncertainty

“Whatever inspiration is, it’s born from a continuous ‘I don’t know.’”

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T.S. Eliot on Writing: His Warm and Wry Letter of Advice to a Sixteen-Year-Old Girl Aspiring to Become a Writer
T.S. Eliot on Writing: His Warm and Wry Letter of Advice to a Sixteen-Year-Old Girl Aspiring to Become a Writer

“Don’t write at first for anyone but yourself.”

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Thoreau on Writing and the Splendors of Mystery in an Age of Knowledge
Thoreau on Writing and the Splendors of Mystery in an Age of Knowledge

“Do not seek expressions, seek thoughts to be expressed.”

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Billy Collins’s Advice to Writers
Billy Collins’s Advice to Writers

“Spotlessness is the niece of inspiration.”

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Inner Preacher vs. Inner Teacher: Ursula K. Le Guin on Meaning-Making and the Artist’s Task
Inner Preacher vs. Inner Teacher: Ursula K. Le Guin on Meaning-Making and the Artist’s Task

“That’s how an artist can best speak as a member of a moral community: clearly, yet leaving around her words that area of silence, that empty space, in which other and further truths and perceptions can form in other minds.”

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How I Fell in Love with Marianne Moore: Or, Elizabeth Bishop on What Her Eccentric Mentor Taught Her About Writing
How I Fell in Love with Marianne Moore: Or, Elizabeth Bishop on What Her Eccentric Mentor Taught Her About Writing

“I never left Cumberland Street without feeling happier: uplifted, even inspired, determined to be good, to work harder, not to worry about what other people thought.”

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