Wednesday, January 22, 2014

The 10 Secret Thoughts of Writers Who Succeeded

by Samantha Wilde

Trying out some new thoughts,
The best way to become like the successful people you admire is to think like them. You don't have to dress like them or live like them or write like them, you just have to borrow their thoughts. Sound crazy? All the great gurus of positive thought highlight the powerful idea that if you change your thoughts you can change your life.

after the publication of my little book.

Think of it: everything we do begins with a thought. Makes you want to choose wisely, doesn't it? Where I'm from, negative, doom-saying, unhelpful thinking is called, "stinkin thinkin." And who wants that?

In other words, for the New Year, you need only one resolution: to think differently.

But then you don't want to think any random person's thoughts, not if you're determined that 2014 is the year you write a novel, finish a novel, get the best idea yet for a novel, market a novel, or find success as a writer.

Do you really want to take advice from this woman?

No, what we need is to think the thoughts that got our literary idols fame and fortune and deep personal satisfaction. Because I know some of those people, I can share you with the top ten secret thoughts of the most successful writers.

10. "No fool ever wrote, except for money." --Samuel Johnson

9. "There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed." --Ernest Hemingway

8. “Writing is like sex. First you do it for love, then you do it for your friends, and then you do it for money.”--Virginia Wolf

7. "I am as bad as the worst but, thank God, I am as good as the best." --Walt Whitman

6. “I hate writing, I love having written.”--Dorothy Parker

5. "Write without pay until someone offers pay. If nobody offers within three years, the candidate may look upon this as a sign that sawing wood is what he was intended for.” --Mark Twain

4. "People do not deserve to have good writing, they are so pleased with bad." --Ralph Waldo Emerson

3."Writing is not necessarily something to be ashamed of, but do it in private and wash your hands afterwards." --Robert Heinlein

2. “Easy reading is damn hard writing.”--Nathaniel Hawthorne

1. “When I write, I feel like an armless, legless man with a crayon in his mouth.”--Kurt Vonnegut

And there you have it! Can you think like these amazing people? Then you can have their fame and fortune.

But if changing your thinking seems too hard, you can simply take a lot of pictures of yourself LOOKING famous and get the same kind of inner satisfaction (minus the money). Like I do.

Happy New Year! Happy New Thoughts!

Samantha Wilde is the author of This Little Mommy Stayed Home, I'll Take What She Has, and Strange Gifts, some writings on love. Even though some people find it hard to believe, she's an ordained minister with a progressive spiritual radio show and a long-term yoga teacher who can put her feet behind her head. In real life, she takes care of her three children who give her lots of opportunities to work on her "stinkin thinkin." She wants you to like her on Facebook because it helps with her self-esteem.


  1. Love these quotes, Sam! Happy thoughts!!

  2. Thanks, Brenda! I had so much fun finding them.

  3. Great quotes, Sam. And all of them TRUE.

  4. Great quotes, Sam! My inspiration? "[Curious] George sat down on the floor and began to write."

    1. Oh, Curious George is awesome! He's a pretty regular part of my life these days, too.

  5. Best laughs of the day, Sam. Thanks for a clever post!

    1. It was lots of fun to find them--and to ask my mother, "who are the funniest dead writers?"