Quotes about Edges
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Quotes about Edges

Quotes about Editing

Quotes about Edges

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72 art quotes about Editing found | Share this page of quotes about Editing on Facebook

I think the hardest thing to teach a student is that what he or she puts down on paper is changeable. It's not the final thing, it's the first thing, which may just be the suggestive, vague identification of something that you have to come back to and rewrite. (M. H. Abrams)

Every syllable that can be struck out is pure profit, and every page that can be economised is a five-per-cent dividend. Nature rebels against this rule; the flesh is weak, and shrinks from the scissors; I groan in retrospect over the weak. (Henry Brooks Adams)

Where were you fellows when the paper was blank? (Fred Allen)

I dare not alter these things; they come to me from above. (Alfred Austin)

After you write, edit, and remove the noise. (Leo Babauta)

You never have to change anything you got up in the middle of the night to write. (Saul Bellow)

sycophant, n. One who approaches Greatness on his belly so that he may not be commanded to turn and be kicked. He is sometimes an editor. (Ambrose Bierce)

proof-reader, n. A malefactor who atones for making your writing nonsense by permitting the compositor to make it unintelligible. (Ambrose Bierce)

Of every four words I write, I strike out three. (Nicolas Boileau)

There is no great writing, only great rewriting. (Louis D. Brandeis)

In the editing process, I delete what I do not want to use, move what remains around if necessary and add elements that I feel will make my visual statement as clear and understandable as possible. (Gerald Brommer)

Editing and selectivity are processes that provide the first steps in determining and conveying content. (Gerald Brommer)

I believe more in the scissors than I do in the pencil. (Truman Capote)

Either you're the one erasing or you're the one being erased. (Jim Carrey)

One cannot simply take nature as she is. The task of composing a surface and arranging the material before you requires a feeling for balance and visual weight. There must be a certainty in the placement of objects, as well as an ability to edit. (Scott L. Christensen)

This report, by its very length, defends itself against the risk of ever being read. (Winston Churchill)

An erasure is a creative mark. (Melanie Circle)

Sit down and put down everything that comes into your head and then you're a writer. But an author is one who can judge his own stuff's worth, without pity, and destroy most of it. (Sidonie Gabrielle Colette)

The longer that line stays on the paper, the heavier it gets, 'til all of a sudden, if you're trying to extract it, it weighs about 700 pounds. (Gord Downie)

Only the hand that erases can write the true thing. (Meister Johann Eckhart)

Some editors are failed writers, but so are most writers. (T. S. Eliot)

An editor should tell the author his writing is better than it is. Not a lot better, a little better. (T. S. Eliot)

Let the reader find that he cannot afford to omit any line of your writing because you have omitted every word that he can spare. (Ralph Waldo Emerson)

Editing is now the easiest thing on earth to do, and all the things that evolved out of word processing - 'Oh, let's put that sentence there, let's get rid of this' - have become commonplace in films and music too. (Brian Eno)

When I start a picture, I always have a script, but I change it every day. I put in what occurs to me that day out of my imagination. You start on a voyage; you know where you will end up but not what will occur along the way. You want to be surprised. (Federico Fellini)

The writing itself is no big deal. The editing, and even more than that, the self-doubt, is excruciatingly impossible. (Jonathan Safran Foer)

If all printers were determined not to print anything till they were sure it would offend nobody, there would be very little printed. (Benjamin Franklin)

I'll agonize over sentences. Mostly because you're trying to create specific effects with sentences, and because there are a number of different voices in the book. (Neil Gaiman)

Every edit is a lie. (Jean-Luc Godard)

Here I am paying big money to you writers and what for? All you do is change the words. (Samuel Goldwyn)

Most of my work consisted of crossing out. Crossing out was the secret of all good writing. (Mark Haddon)

-working lyric for a piece from The Sound of Music...
Cute little babies that fall out of swings / These are a few of my favourite things. (Oscar Hammerstein)

I love the idea of leaving some of the original abstract thought in, because the problem is that when you pick up a pen you become a snob, your own worse critic. You edit yourself in a way that is non-creative. (Glen Hansard)

Develop a built-in bullshit detector. (Ernest Hemingway)

The length of a film should be directly related to the endurance of the human bladder. (Alfred Hitchcock)

Often you must turn your stylus to erase, if you hope to write anything worth a second reading. (Horace)

I think editors have to come out of a certain kind of community. (Bill Joy)

I don't take notes; I don't outline, I don't do anything like that. I just flail away at the goddamn thing. I'm a salami writer. I try to write good salami, but salami is salami. You can't sell it as caviar. (Stephen King)

I don't write a quick draft and then revise; instead, I work slowly page by page, revising and polishing. (Dean Koontz)

No author dislikes to be edited as much as he dislikes not to be published. (J. Russel Lynes)

While writing is like a joyful release, editing is a prison where the bars are my former intentions and the abusive warden my own neuroticism. (Tiffany Madison)

I came to a dead stop and began major revisions. Sometimes these entailed the shredding of all existing manuscript for a fresh start - an inefficient way to write a book, though I found it exciting. (William Manchester)

Maybe because I was trained as a writer, I edit while I paint. For me, it's part of the process and it gets me where I want to go. I don't have the ability to see my finished painting in my mind's eye before it hits the canvas. (Bonnie Mandoe)

The conscious mind is the editor, and the subconscious mind is the writer. And the joy of writing, when you're writing from your subconscious, is beautiful – it's thrilling. When you're editing, which is your conscious mind, it's like torture. (Steve Martin)

I am one of those strange writers who can actually derive pleasure from the editing process. (Cindy Matthews)

The true function of art is to edit nature and so to make it coherent and lovely. The artist is a sort of impassioned proofreader, blue-pencilling the bad spelling of God. (H. L. Mencken)

I'm not a very good writer, but I'm an excellent rewriter. (James A. Michener)

That no publisher will ever be able to tell me to take things out. Because I'll put it out myself. The more money I earn, the less they can stop me. (Michael Moore)

It is my ambition to say in ten sentences what others say in a whole book. (Friedrich Nietzsche)

The big issue was cutting. I finally cut as much as I could, about a fourth of the story, and actually liked it. (ZZ Packer)

I have only made this letter longer because I have not had the time to make it shorter. (Blaise Pascal)

I love revision. Where else can spilled milk be turned into ice cream? (Katherine Paterson)

- Ghost Writer...
I turn sentences around. That's my life. I write a sentence and then I turn it around. Then I look at it and turn it around again. Then I have lunch. (Philip Roth)

A great deal of repetition can be avoided by re-reading and editing. (William Safire)

-Oasis Magazine, June 2008...
I tend to write things seven times before I show them to my editor. I write them seven times, then I take them on tour, read them like a dozen times on tour, then go back to the room and rewrite, read and rewrite... I would never show him a first draft, because then he's really going to be sick of it by the twelfth draft. (David Sedaris)

- interview with Tim Clark, 2004...
I guess I did about 300-400 drawings for each book and edited them down. When I was working on them I kind of had a rough notion of what the books were about. (David Shrigley)

Kennedy did not have to run the risk of having his ideas and his words shortened and adulterated by a correspondent. This was the television era, not only in campaigning, but in holding the presidency. (Hugh Sidey)

The wastebasket is the writer's best friend. (Isaac Bashevis Singer)

In composing, as a general rule, run your pen through every other word you have written; you have no idea what vigor it will give your style. (Sydney Smith)

An editor is one who separates the wheat from the chaff and prints the chaff. (Adlai Stevenson)

Omit needless words. (William Strunk Jr.)

It's never too late – in fiction or in life – to revise. (Nancy Thayer)

Not that the story need be long, but it will take a long while to make it short. (Henry David Thoreau)

I hate editors, for they make me abandon a lot of perfectly good English words. (Mark Twain)

Writing and rewriting are a constant search for what it is one is saying. (John Updike)

Since we must and do write each our own way, we may during actual writing get more lasting instruction not from another's work, whatever its blessings, however better it is than ours, but from our own poor scratched-over pages. For these we can hold up to life. That is, we are born with a mind and heart to hold each page up to, and to ask: is it valid? (Eudora Welty)

The best writing is rewriting. (E. B. White)

There is a difference between a book of two hundred pages from the very beginning, and a book of two hundred pages which is the result of an original eight hundred pages. The six hundred are there. Only you don't see them. (Elie Wiesel)

An incinerator is a writer's best friend. (Thornton Wilder)

You can't revise a blank page. (Leonard Wolf)

The friends that have it I do wrong / Whenever I remake a song / Should know what issue is at stake, / It is myself that I remake. (William Butler Yeats)

- On Writing Well...
Few people realize how badly they write... The point is that you have to strip down your writing before you can build it back up. (William K. Zinsser)