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20 Inspirational Author Quotes About Writing

By Scott Lorenz
Westwind Communications

If you’re an aspiring author in search of the secrets to success, it only makes sense to ask those who have achieved it. After all, they’ve been in your shoes.

While you may not be able to speak to successful authors directly, you can read their quotes.  I’ve done the heavy lifting for you and compiled these 20 quotes about writing, which are sure to inspire and intrigue you.

1. “You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.” – Jack London

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2. “All a writer needs is talent and ink.” -J.K. Rowling

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3. “The scariest moment is always just before you start.” -Stephen King

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4. “Nobody buys a book that they don’t pick up.” -James Patterson

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5. “You see a lot of young writers who have interesting ideas and a certain skill with words, but their story is not a story … it’s more of a vignette.” -George R.R. Martin

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6. “No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader.” -Robert Frost

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7. “If you have no critics, you’ll likely have no success.” -Malcolm X

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8. “You can make anything by writing.”  -C.S. Lewis

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9. “Write. Rewrite. When not writing or rewriting, read. I know of no shortcuts.” -Larry L. King

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10. “I don’t need an alarm clock. My ideas wake me.” -Ray Bradbury

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11. “In order to write about life first you must live it.” -Ernest Hemingway

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12. “Character is plot, plot is character.” -F. Scott Fitzgerald

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13. “Write what should not be forgotten.” -Isabel Allende

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14. “If you don’t see the book you want on the shelf, write it.” -Beverly Cleary

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15. “I know nothing in the world that has as much power as a word. Sometimes I write one, and I look at it, until it begins to shine.” -Emily Dickinson

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16. “Write about the emotions you fear the most.” -Laurie Halse Anderson

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17. “Almost all good writing begins with terrible first efforts. You need to start somewhere.” -Anne Lamott

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18. “You can always edit a bad page. You can’t edit a blank page.” -Jodi Picoult

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19. “Done is better than perfect.” -Sheryl Sandberg

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20. “Never trust anyone who has not brought a book with them.” -Lemony Snicket (aka Daniel Handler)

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The Bottom Line: Take these quotes and use them to push you forward. Remember, success as an author doesn’t happen overnight. It takes a great deal of dedication, passion, and hard work.

About Book Publicist Scott Lorenz

Book publicist Scott Lorenz is President of Westwind Communications, a public relations and marketing firm that has a special knack for working with authors to help them get all the publicity they deserve and more. Lorenz works with bestselling authors and self-published authors promoting all types of books, whether it’s their first book or their 15th book. He’s handled publicity for books by CEOs, CIA Officers, Navy SEALS, Homemakers, Fitness Gurus, Doctors, Lawyers and Adventurers. His clients have been featured by Good Morning America, FOX & Friends, CNN, ABC News, New York Times, Nightline, TIME, PBS, LA Times, USA Today, Washington Post, Woman’s World, & Howard Stern to name a few.

Learn more about Westwind Communications’ book marketing approach at book-marketing-expert.com  or contact Lorenz at scottlorenz@westwindcos.com or 734-667-2090 or fill out the form below. Follow Lorenz on Twitter @aBookPublicist. Want help titling a book? Check out Scott Lorenz’s new award winning, bestselling book: Book Title Generator- A Proven System in Naming Your Book www.BookTitleGenerator.net

 

Authors: Don’t Let a Rejection Letter Get You Down!

By Scott Lorenz
Westwind Book Marketing

Authors: Don’t Let a Rejection Letter Get You DownGetting a rejection letter hurts. I know because I deal with authors all the time, and I have seen first-hand how it can take its toll on the confidence and motivation of an author.

The harsh truth is most writers will face some form of rejection throughout their writing career, and even some of the greatest writers of our time had to deal with rejection letters.

I have put together a list of well-known authors who were rejected by publishers but went on to become immensely successful. Some of the names on this list may really surprise you.

1. J. K. Rowling: A few years ago, J.K. Rowling posted rejection letters on Twitter that she received for her first novel, ‘The Cuckoo’s Calling’, a book written under her pseudonym, Robert Galbraith. “I wasn’t going to give up until every single publisher turned me down, but I often feared that would happen,” says Rowling. The book was eventually published and the author then went on to write ‘Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone’, which was also initially rejected, this time by 12 publishers. When the book was finally published, however, it sold more than 120 million copies. The famous Harry Potter series has now sold more than 500 million copies worldwide, becoming the best-selling series of all time!

2. Stephen King: Stephen King was told: “We are not interested in science fiction which deals with negative utopias. They do not sell.” for his book debut novel ‘Carrie’, which was rejected by 30 publishers. Later in his career, these rejections would inspire him to write some of his best-selling works. In his book ‘On Writing’, Stephen King says he pinned every single rejection letter he had received to his wall with a nail, “By the time I was fourteen, the nail in my wall would no longer support the weight of the rejection slips impaled upon it. I replaced the nail with a spike and went on writing.” Today, the best-selling author has published 63 books and sold more than 350 million copies.

3. Vladimir Nabokov: Over a five-year period, forty editors declined the offer to publish ‘Lolita’. In his bookThe Making of a Bestseller’, Arthur T Vanderbilt mentions that one publisher said to Vladimir: “I recommend that it be buried under a stone for a thousand years.” Yet when the book was eventually published it became a literary sensation.

4. Jack Canfield: Canfield’s book, “Chicken Soup for the Soul” got rejected by 144 publishers! The book went on to become a bestseller. As of date, the series has sold more than 500 million books. Canfield said: “If we had given up after 100 publishers, I likely would not be where I am now. I encourage you to reject rejection. If someone says no, just say NEXT!”.

5. Dr Seuss: For his first story, ‘And to think I saw it on Mulberry street’, Dr Seuss was rejected by 27 publishers. “Too different from other juveniles on the market to warrant its selling”, one letter said. Luckily, the author did not give up and continued to write. Today, his books have made over 300 million sales, and the author is considered one of the best-selling fiction authors of all time.

It is easy for writers to wallow in self-doubt and pity after receiving rejection letters from publishers or agents. That fear can be powerful, and it can deter writers from doing what they love. Sometimes, it can even be the reason they give up on their writing dreams altogether. I hope this list can help inspire you to keep writing and not give up.

It’s also easy to forget that writing a book is an incredible accomplishment, and the undertaking itself deserves great commendation. Receiving rejection letters doesn’t mean your book has failed or that it won’t succeed. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to improve the chances of your book becoming successful. If you have finished writing your book, make sure it’s properly edited and proofread before sending it out to publishers. Editing, copyediting, and proofreading can truly make your book shine.

Once your book has finished the editing stage, the next step is to market it appropriately. This stage can prove pivotal for success. Check out my article on how you can generate buzz around your book to help your book get the attention it deserves. Another important element of book marketing that is overlooked at times is the author website. I have previously compiled a list of top author websites which you can use as inspiration to design your own.

The Bottom Line: Receiving a rejection letter shouldn’t be the reason you give up on your writing dreams. Be inspired by the successful authors above who used rejection as fuel to keep going.

About Book Publicist Scott Lorenz

Book publicist Scott Lorenz is President of Westwind Communications, a public relations and marketing firm that has a special knack for working with authors to help them get all the publicity they deserve and more. Lorenz works with bestselling authors and self-published authors promoting all types of books, whether it’s their first book or their 15th book. He’s handled publicity for books by CEOs, CIA Officers, Navy SEALS, Homemakers, Fitness Gurus, Doctors, Lawyers and Adventurers. His clients have been featured by Good Morning America, FOX & Friends, CNN, ABC News, New York Times, Nightline, TIME, PBS, LA Times, USA Today, Washington Post, Woman’s World, & Howard Stern to name a few.

Learn more about Westwind Communications’ book marketing approach at https://www.book-marketing-expert.com/  or contact Lorenz at scottlorenz@westwindcos.com, or 734-667-2090 or fill out the form below. Follow Lorenz on Twitter @aBookPublicist. Want help titling a book? Check out Scott Lorenz’s new award-winning book: www.BookTitleGenerator.net

 

How to Get Your Book Adapted into a Screenplay

By Scott Lorenz
Westwind Book Marketing

How to Get Your Book Adapted into a ScreenplayMost authors hope that one day their book will be adapted into a movie or a series on Netflix or HBO. I’ve never met an author who could not envision their book on the big screen. As a book publicist, I’ve worked with authors whose book was optioned by Hollywood after we obtained a higher profile with publicity or when they won an award. The question is how does an author go about intentionally getting that movie deal?

There are numerous paths authors can take to get their book adapted into a movie. I recently spoke with two screenplay writers, Oliver Tuthill and Tara Walker, and they offered terrific advice for authors interested in pursuing this path.

Scott Lorenz: Can you give me examples of books that were adapted into screenplays and made it onto the movie screen?

Oliver Tuthill and Tara Walker: Robert Bloch wrote a novel in 1960 called Psycho, and Alfred Hitchcock had it adapted into a screenplay. It became the most famous movie of Hitchcock’s career. Louisa May Alcott’s novel, Little Women, has been made into feature films on three different occasions. Most recently, in 2019, Greta Gerwig adapted it into a screenplay, and the popular film created a resurgence of interest in the story.

Another well-known adaptation of a novel was Dan Brown’s DaVinci Code written for the screen by Akiva Goldsman which did 760 million at the box office worldwide. George R.R. Martin’s novels, Game of Thrones, became one of the biggest television series hits ever, when adapted for television. One of the most popular novelists alive is Stephen King, and screenplay writer Frank Darabont adapted King’s novella into the Shawshank Redemption, which was a monumental success. These are just some of the examples of writers who have been very successful, and this is a difficult endeavor.

Scott Lorenz: What kind of strategy can a book author use to have a book adapted into a screenplay?

Oliver Tuthill and Tara Walker: There is a method that every writer can follow that can allow for the opportunity for your book to be turned into a screenplay, then a film.

First, you do need to have a finished book, and assuming you do, your next step would be to find a professional screenplay writer with whom you could work to adapt your novel into script form. Professional screenplay writers are highly skilled professionals, who have spent many years, if not decades, honing their craft. Once you find a screenplay writer to work with you, the author must realize that a screenplay is going to be approximately 90 to 100 minutes in length, so it is impossible to cover every dramatic event in your book. The screenplay writer will work with you to include the highlights of your book to make it accessible as a cinematic experience, to be viewed within an hour and a half to two hours.

Scott Lorenz: Let’s just say that you have hired a screenplay writer to adapt your book into a screenplay. Now what?

Oliver Tuthill and Tara Walker: If you’re lucky, you might have hired a screenplay writer who also works within the industry as a film producer. In this case, the producer can represent your screenplay and try to find a production company who would be interested in producing it. Most successful screenplay writers are represented by a literary agent in Hollywood, with whom they can submit the screenplay. Then, their agent will submit the screenplays to production companies who are constantly looking for new screenplays to produce into feature films.

Most producers looking for new screenplays are much more likely to produce scripts that have been adapted from a book. Another option furthering your screenplay toward being produced, would be to enter it into film festival competitions. A producer could see it in this venue and might like it enough to option the screenplay from the author. An example of this was when writer Evan Daugherty submitted his script, Snow White & the Huntsman, to the Script Pipeline script competition. His script won the competition, and as a result, he sold Snow White & the Huntsman to Universal for $3.25 million.

It was one of the biggest studio spec sales of all time, and its success turned Evan into one of the most sought-after writers in Hollywood. The film was also very successful and has grossed $450 million worldwide.

Scott Lorenz: Can my book authors expect to get paid over 3 million dollars when selling their screenplays to movie studios?

Oliver Tuthill and Tara Walker: It is possible, but you would need a very good sales agent to help you close the deal. Also, a bidding war between film companies would be an ideal situation for the writer to make more money. As an example, Joe Eszterhas, who wrote Basic Instinct, sold his spec script for 3 million to Carolco Pictures. A spec script is a screenplay that an author writes without receiving payment upfront. Bill Marsilii and Terry Rossio were paid 5 million for their script, Deja Vu, which was also a spec script.

Scott Lorenz: This sounds exciting! How can people get in touch with you if they want help adapting their books into screenplays?

Oliver Tuthill and Tara Walker: We can be contacted through our website at: https://bit.ly/BestScriptDoctor

For authors, investing in book marketing and book publicity can be a great way to help generate interest in your book and turn it into a film. I’ve also previously written on producers offering author tips for film adaptation and how you can get a Hollywood producer interested in your book.

I hope the interview and articles on my blog can inspire you to pursue film adaptation. Who knows, maybe your book can be the next big hit!

Bottom Line: If you believe your book has the potential to be made into a movie then take action!

About Book Publicist Scott Lorenz

Book publicist Scott Lorenz is President of Westwind Communications, a public relations and marketing firm that has a special knack for working with authors to help them get all the publicity they deserve and more. Lorenz works with bestselling authors and self-published authors promoting all types of books, whether it’s their first book or their 15th book. He’s handled publicity for books by CEOs, CIA Officers, Navy SEALS, Homemakers, Fitness Gurus, Doctors, Lawyers and Adventurers. His clients have been featured by Good Morning America, FOX & Friends, CNN, ABC News, New York Times, Nightline, TIME, PBS, LA Times, USA Today, Washington Post, Woman’s World, & Howard Stern to name a few.

Learn more about Westwind Communications’ book marketing approach at https://www.book-marketing-expert.com/  or contact Lorenz at scottlorenz@westwindcos.com, or 734-667-2090 or fill out the form below. Follow Lorenz on Twitter @aBookPublicist. Want help titling a book? Check out Scott Lorenz’s new book: www.BookTitleGenerator.net

 

5 Books to Help You Become a Better Writer

By Scott Lorenz
Westwind Book Marketing

5 Books to Help You Become a Better WriterAs a book publicist, I’m frequently asked to give advice on writing a book. The truth is, there are so many elements that can make a book successful—but one of the most important is that it be written well.

Writing well is the goal of every writer—regardless of where they are in their writing journey. It is also a skill that requires continuous practice. Even published authors continuously work to perfect their craft.

It can be hard to decide what advice is most relevant when so many books have been published on the topic. That said, reading books on the art of writing can sometimes be more helpful than an entire college writing course. The five books that I’ve listed below reveal the nature of writing life and the art of writing well in intimate detail. They offer everything from grammar rules to advice on publishing a book to personal narratives as they teach the ins and outs of writing and what it means to be a writer.

1. On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King. This memoir is a brilliant graphic tale of King’s life, and like all his stories, it does not lack imagination. The book is an invitation behind the scenes to his writing and career. It features moments that shaped King as an author and the various lessons he acquired from decades of practice and publication. It is a masterclass for aspiring writers.

2. The Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr. and E.B. White. The Elements of Style is considered the gold standard on writing. Strunk and White outline basic linguistic and stylistic rules and instructions on how to write clearly and concisely. They also cover common mistakes that writers make and how to avoid them. This book is a classic for a reason.

3. On Writing by Ernest Hemingway. While Hemingway never wrote a treatise on the art of writing, he left behind passages in letters, articles, and books with opinions and advice on writing. In 1984, Larry W. Phillips compiled these into a book. On Writing is a collection of writing advice from one of the greatest American writers of the twentieth century. Hemingway gives us a glimpse into the psyche and mental preparation of a writer and a clear definition of the difference between good and bad writing. The book is essential reading for any aspiring writer.

4. Several Short Sentences About Writing by Verlyn Klinkenborg. In this book, Verlyn Klinkenborg challenges writers to forget everything they have ever been taught about writing. The author uses a poetic prose style to make the point that the sentence itself is the most essential element of writing, and each sentence should do its share of the work.

5. Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life by Anne Lamott. In this delightfully witty and humorous piece on writing and family life, Lamott addresses the difficulties of writing and getting published. Bird by Bird is an anecdotal work full of wry observations about life and writing. Anne’s lessons are those she has shared in workshops over the years as she covers what she’s learned through trial and error. Bird by Bird is a must-read, for aspiring fiction writers especially.

Today, many books and courses are available to assist writers on their writing journey. Authors have abundant writing resources at their disposal to help them hone their writing skills. I’ve previously written on how editing and proofreading can make your writing shine—and on the power and art of brevity for authors.  If you don’t want to read a book, you can watch the Masterclass courses on writing and receive author advice from some of the best writers of our day. There is a great masterclass by James Patterson on how to write a bestselling book.

The Bottom Line: Regardless of how long you’ve been writing, you can glean tips and techniques from authors who have succeeded in their field. Learn from them.

About Book Publicist Scott Lorenz

Book publicist Scott Lorenz is President of Westwind Communications, a public relations and marketing firm that has a special knack for working with authors to help them get all the publicity they deserve and more. Lorenz works with bestselling authors and self-published authors promoting all types of books, whether it’s their first book or their 15th book. He’s handled publicity for books by CEOs, CIA Officers, Navy SEALS, Homemakers, Fitness Gurus, Doctors, Lawyers and Adventurers. His clients have been featured by Good Morning America, FOX & Friends, CNN, ABC News, New York Times, Nightline, TIME, PBS, LA Times, USA Today, Washington Post, Woman’s World, & Howard Stern to name a few.

Learn more about Westwind Communications’ book marketing approach at https://www.book-marketing-expert.com/  or contact Lorenz at scottlorenz@westwindcos.com, or 734-667-2090 or fill out the form below. Follow Lorenz on Twitter @aBookPublicist. Want help titling a book? Check out Scott Lorenz’s new award winning book: www.BookTitleGenerator.net

 

Authors, Are You in a Writing Rut? Here’s 5 Ways to Get Your Mojo Back!

By Scott Lorenz
Westwind Book Marketing

Most authors I work with are highly motivated and driven. Yet, every now and then even the most prolific authors run into a wall.

Authors, Are You in a Writing Rut? Here’s 5 Ways to Get Your Mojo Back!As a book publicist, I’ve helped many authors fix a current book, focus on their next book, given inspiration, direction or sometimes just ‘pushed’ a bit to move things along.

“A writer who waits for ideal conditions under which to work will die without putting a word on paper.”  E.B. White

Most writers have goals they hope to achieve, but sometimes a lack of motivation can impede their progress. I understand that writing is hard. It’s something almost every writer struggles with – even some of the greats often did.

If you’re waiting for motivation to start writing, you might be waiting a long time because the motivation to write is fickle. You need to change the way you think about writing.

I’ve put together these five remedies that can help you stay motivated:

1. Daily repetition and routine. In his book What I Talk About When I Talk About Running, Haruki Murakami mentions that when he is writing a novel he gets up at 4 am every morning and works for five to six hours. He keeps this routine every single day without variation.
If you’re an aspiring writer, you have to dig deep and find the drive to write every single day. Repetition is essential for forming daily habits. It helps to set time aside for writing each day and to stick to it. Writing needs to fit into your life in a way that suits your circumstances. Commitments in your life like school, work, and hobbies will fill up your whole day if you let them, so it’s necessary to commit to a regular time where you just sit down and write. The key is to write consistently – only with repetition will you be able to make it part of your routine.

2. Read something different like Poetry or a Business book. Reading will help turn on your creative engine and provide a source of motivation for your own writing. How often have you read a good piece of work or come across a beautifully written passage and thought to yourself, I would love to write like that. Good writing by accomplished writers can be deeply inspiring.

3. Remember why you started. All writers write for a reason, whether it’s to express themselves, create something meaningful, help others, or entertain. The purpose behind the writing drives the writer to produce meaningful pieces of work. Periodically ask yourself why you want to write – this can help remind you of your writing goals and why it’s important to you.

4. Do something exciting. Take a hot air balloon ride; take surfing lessons, go sailing on a barefoot cruise for a week in the Caribbean where you are part of the crew doing the work. When you’re focused on sailing your subconscious mind will help you get free of things that trap you in the rut.

5. Meet your fears and conquer them. Can’t stand heights? Learn how to skydive. Don’t like to go underwater? Learn how to scuba dive. Don’t like raw fish? Eat some sushi. Force yourself to do something you don’t want to do. You’ll be better for it.

I recently came across a great article by Robert Lee Brewer on the New York Times bestselling author Christina Baker Kline, where she shares insights into the writing process of her novel: The Exiles. Christina shares some valuable advice to other authors on persevering when things get difficult: “Forge ahead through the hard parts. With every novel I’ve written, I come to a moment when I want to give up…The only thing to do is inch ahead little by little. There’s a quote I love by Honor Moore: “If you don’t put it in, you can’t take it out.” If you don’t get something on the page, you won’t have anything to work with. That advice has saved many a writing day—and many a novel.”

The truth is that no writer is always motivated to write, but it helps to make writing part of your daily routine and to regularly read books that inspire you. When you feel unmotivated and stuck, remember why you started in the first place.

I’ve written a few related articles for authors and provided writing advice for aspiring writers. If you feel like you’re stuck in a writing rut, check out this article on great author resources available online to help you generate ideas. I also wrote this one on attending writers’ conferences, and another helpful article on how book fairs or festivals can be a way to meet people who can give you valuable advice on your writing.

The Bottom Line: Waiting for inspiration to strike won’t help you achieve your writing goals. Take action and motivation will follow.

About Book Publicist Scott Lorenz

Book publicist Scott Lorenz is President of Westwind Communications, a public relations and marketing firm that has a special knack for working with authors to help them get all the publicity they deserve and more. Lorenz works with bestselling authors and self-published authors promoting all types of books, whether it’s their first book or their 15th book. He’s handled publicity for books by CEOs, CIA Officers, Navy SEALS, Homemakers, Fitness Gurus, Doctors, Lawyers and Adventurers. His clients have been featured by Good Morning America, FOX & Friends, CNN, ABC News, New York Times, Nightline, TIME, PBS, LA Times, USA Today, Washington Post, Woman’s World, & Howard Stern to name a few.

Learn more about Westwind Communications’ book marketing approach at https://www.book-marketing-expert.com/  or contact Lorenz at scottlorenz@westwindcos.com, or 734-667-2090 or fill out the form below. Follow Lorenz on Twitter @aBookPublicist. Want help titling a book? Check out Scott Lorenz’s new book: www.BookTitleGenerator.net