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Miguel de Cervantes

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It is not the hand but the understanding of a man that may be said to write.
--
Part II (1615), Book III, Author's Preface

 
Miguel de Cervantes

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Early in my public labors I was bidden by the Lord, "Write, write the things that are revealed to you." At the time this message came to me, I could not hold my hand steady. My physical condition made it impossible for me to write. But again came the word, "Write the things that are revealed to you." I obeyed; and as the result it was not long before I could write page after page with comparative ease. Who told me what to write? Who steadied my right hand, and made it possible for me to use a pen? ó It was the Lord.

 
Ellen G. White
 

The question we writers are asked most often, the favorite question, is: Why do you write? I write because I have an innate need to write. I write because I canít do normal work as other people do. I write because I want to read books like the ones I write. I write because I am angry at everyone. I write because I love sitting in a room all day writing. I write because I can partake of real life only by changing it. I write because I want others, the whole world, to know what sort of life we lived, and continue to live, in Istanbul, in Turkey. I write because I love the smell of paper, pen, and ink. I write because I believe in literature, in the art of the novel, more than I believe in anything else. I write because it is a habit, a passion. I write because I am afraid of being forgotten. I write because I like the glory and interest that writing brings. I write to be alone. Perhaps I write because I hope to understand why I am so very, very angry at everyone. I write because I like to be read. I write because once I have begun a novel, an essay, a page I want to finish it. I write because everyone expects me to write. I write because I have a childish belief in the immortality of libraries, and in the way my books sit on the shelf. I write because it is exciting to turn all lifeís beauties and riches into words. I write not to tell a story but to compose a story. I write because I wish to escape from the foreboding that there is a place I must go butóas in a dreamócanít quite get to. I write because I have never managed to be happy. I write to be happy.

 
Orhan Pamuk
 

Most writers are successful in getting their readersí attention, but fail at getting them to think. If youíre asked to explain anything philosophical to anyone, the chances are great their understanding will be superficial; itís best they donít understand than to think they do, so encourage them to grow into understanding and donít hand them too much explanation.

 
Eugene J. Martin
 

We cannot exert our understanding without from time to time understanding something of importance; and this act of understanding may be accompanied by the awareness of our understanding, by the understanding of understanding, by noesis noesos, and this is so high, so pure, so noble an experience that Aristotle could ascribe it to his God.

 
Leo Strauss
 

I want to write ó I want to write ó I want to write and never never never will. I know it and I am so unhappy and it seems as though nothing else mattered. Whatever I'm doing, it's always there, an ultimate longing there saying, "Write this ó write that ó write ó" and I can't. Lack ability, time, strength, and duration of vision. I wish someone would tell me brutally, "You can never write anything. Take up home gardening!"

 
Anne Morrow Lindbergh
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