Five Great Quotes for Writers

success-failure[1]Great quotes are like mantras to me. Words to live by, to be inspired by. They can be funny, poignant, or even maudlin, but if they resonate with me in some way, they go into my collection.

I don’t have a large collection yet, but after reviewing the few I do have, I found that they still work for me, even though some I found over 20 years ago.

I’m sharing five of my favorites. You’ll notice that many have a lot to do with success and failure, which isn’t a negative in my view, but rather a reality, a challenge, and a necessary part of life.

Some of the quotes directly refer to writers or the writing life, but many are more generic thoughts that certainly can apply to writers. Do any of these resonate with you?

  1. Success is walking from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm. – Winston Churchill 
  2.  Success is not built on success. It’s built on failure. It’s built on frustration. Sometimes it’s built on catastrophe. – Sumner Redstone
  3.  Rejection is a writer’s best friend. If you are not failing regularly, you are living so far below your potential that you’re failing anyway. – Gregg Levoy
  4.  I can accept failure, everyone fails at something. But I can’t accept not trying. – Michael Jordan.
  5. I love deadlines. I love the whooshing noise they make as they go by. – Douglas Adams

And finally, I’m sharing one that has nothing to do with writing, but given the world’s political climate, I couldn’t resist:

No diet will remove all the fat from your body because the brain is entirely fat. Without a brain, you might look good, but all you could do is run for public office —  George Bernard Shaw

If you have any great quotes, please feel free to send them along!

Author: debrapurdykong

I'm a British Columbia author who's been writing for over 30 years. My volunteer experiences, criminology diploma, and security work inspired me to write the Casey Holland transit security novels set in Metro Vancouver. I'm also a part-time facilitator in Creative Writing Workshops through Port Moody's Recreation program. Feel free to contact me at

12 thoughts on “Five Great Quotes for Writers”

  1. I’ve read some of these quotes before but also have kept #5. I have a quotation book that I started in elementary school. Haven’t added much to it lately, but have few for it when it comes out of storage!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It would be interesting to see how many of them still resonate with you after all that time. Hopefully, you can get them out of storage over the next few weeks!!


  2. A great list, thanks. I have a lot of quotes that I like. Here is one that is good for writers.
    “We are faced with a series of great opportunities brilliantly disguised as unsolvable problems.” John W. Gardner

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you, Debra, I really enjoyed your quotes, particularly the penultimate one and the public office one.
    About right! You live in a beautiful part of the world. We have good friends living in Vancouver, and relatives now there and visited several years ago. We also lived and worked in Toronto decades ago. Quite an experience! I do feel for you regarding your mother. At the moment, we have a dear relative who is nearly 93 and should be in a home (in the UK) but ‘won’t go…’ Such a problem; luckily she has a faithful Carer who copes. Life certainly is a coaster ride! Take care. Writing is such a balm…. x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your kind comments, Joy. Glad you enjoyed the quotes, and yes, Vancouver is beautiful, albeit quite expensive now. Mom goes into the retirement home in two weeks, so we’re busy packing up her place now. Slowly, she’s accepting her future.


  4. Pleased to hear the news of your mother’s acceptance. Do hope she settles in well. I’m 86 (mentally 40…) so understand the plight between young and older…(How the hell did I get here?!)Apart from a’wobbly hip’ I’m lucky.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha! My mom says the same thing. Glad you’re doing so well! My mom stopped using a computer about 2 years ago, although she thinks she still uses it…but my sister monitors email activity & knows she hasn’t.


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