„Writers don't write from experience, although many are hesitant to admit that they don't.... If you wrote from experience, you'd get maybe one book, maybe three poems. Writers write from empathy.“

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„If I get it, no one will ever know to what heights I might have gone as a writer. Maybe if you wrote about the promise that was there, all wouldn't be lost.“

—  James Jones American author 1921 - 1977
Context: I'm going to ask you something. If I do get killed, and I honestly don't see how I can help it, I want you to write that book we were thinking about when I enlisted. If I get it, it's a cinch I won't be able to do it, and it would make me feel a whole lot better to know that if not my name and hand, at least, the thot of me would be passed on and not forgotten entirely. You know, sort of put into the book the promise that I had and the things I might have written so at least the knowledge of talent wasted won't be lost... If I get it, no one will ever know to what heights I might have gone as a writer. Maybe if you wrote about the promise that was there, all wouldn't be lost. Letter to his brother Jeff from Guadalcanal (28 January 1943); p. 28

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„The really great writers are people like Emily Brontë who sit in a room and write out of their limited experience and unlimited imagination.“

—  James A. Michener American author 1907 - 1997
As quoted in "The Michener Phenomenon" by Caryn James in The New York Times (8 September 1985)

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„The best way to become a successful writer is to read good writing, remember it, and then forget where you remember it from.“

—  Gene Fowler American journalist 1890 - 1960
Attributed without citation in Blythe Camenson (2002) How to Sell, Then Write Your Nonfiction Book. p. 188

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