The creative process—and life—is filled with challenges. It helps to have inspiration along the way. Inspiration that helps us to keep going, even when the process feels hard. Really hard. Inspiration that reminds us of the wonder and power of writing, of making music, of molding and shaping all sorts of materials, of designing, of dancing, of drawing, of baking, of sewing, of creating anything. Which is why today I’m sharing an assortment of wonderful quotes from the new book Treat Ideas Like Cats: And Other Creative Quotes to Inspire Creative People, written by journalist and magazine editor Zachary Petit.
I saw that life was a vast glowing empty page and I could do anything I wanted. ~ Jack Kerouac
Whatever you’re meant to do, do it now. The conditions are always impossible. ~ Doris Lessing
When facing a difficult task, act as though it is impossible to fail. If you’re going after Moby Dick, take along the tartar sauce. ~ H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
To me, the greatest pleasure of writing is not what it’s about, but the inner music that words make. ~ Truman Capote
Stop acting so small. You are the universe in ecstatic motion. ~ Rumi
Love is the axis and breath of my life. The art I produce is a byproduct, an excrescence of love, the song I sing, the joy which must explode, the overabundance—that is all! ~ Anais Nin
Writing is perhaps the greatest of human inventions, binding together people, citizens of distant epochs, who never knew one another. Books break the shackles of time, proof that humans work magic. ~ Carl Sagan
Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time. ~ Thomas Merton
If I lose the light of the sun, I will write by candlelight, moonlight, no light. If I lose paper and ink, I will write in blood on forgotten walls. I will write always. I will capture nights all over the world and bring them to you. ~ Henry Rollins
The role of the artist is to ask questions, not answer them. ~ Anton Chekhov
I don’t distinguish between magic and art. ~ Alan Moore
Imagination will often carry us to world that never were. But without it we go nowhere. ~ Carl Sagan
Who wants to become a writer? And why? Because it’s the answer to everything. It’s the streaming reason for living. To note, to pin down, to build up, to create, to be astonished at nothing, to cherish the oddities, to let nothing go down the drain, to make something, to make a great flower out of life, even if it’s a cactus. ~ Enid Bagnold
Creativity is not an answer, it’s a process. ~ Stefan Mumaw
The only difference between a flower and a weed is judgment. ~ Wayne W. Dyer
Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven’s sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possibly can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something. ~ Kurt Vonnegut
Fill your home, your office, your car, your notebook, your phone with quotes that inspire you. Fill your head and your heart with words you need to read.
What’s your favorite quote? What quote has served as a guiding light for your work, for your creative process?