Let it be impressed upon your minds, let it be instilled into your children, that the liberty of the press is the palladium of all the civil, political, and religious rights.
Writing is a voice that calls us from dreams that peeks out of the corner of our eyes when we think no one is looking the longing that breaks our hearts even when we think we should be happiest and to which we cannot give a name.
Everywhere I go I’m asked if I think the university stifles writers. My opinion is that they don’t stifle enough of them. There’s many a best-seller that could have been prevented by a good teacher.
Writing is a solitary occupation. Family, friends, and society are the natural enemies of the writer. He must be alone, uninterrupted, and slightly savage if he is to sustain and complete an undertaking.
Writing has laws of perspective of light and shade just as painting does or music. If you are born knowing them fine. If not learn them. Then rearrange the rules to suit yourself.
I was born to be an editor, I always edit everything. I edit my room at least once a week. Hotels are made for me. I can change a hotel room so thoroughly that even its proprietor doesn’t recognize it…. I edit people’s clothes, dressing them infallibly in the right lines…. I change everyone’s coiffure — except those that please me — and these I gaze at with such satisfaction that I become suspect, I edit people’s tones of voice, their laughter, their words. I change their gestures, their photographs. I change the books I read, the music I hear … It’s this incessant, unavoidable observation, this need to distinguish and impose, that has made me an editor. I can’t make things. I can only revise what has been made.
Take care that you never spell a word wrong. Always before you write a word, consider how it is spelled, and, if you do not remember, turn to a dictionary. It produces great praise to a lady to spell well.