Old book bindings at the Merton College library. Photo by Tom Murphy VII.
“Some, dreading that awareness of how they do what they do would cripple their spontaneity, never study the craft. Instead, they march along in a lockstep of unconscious habit, thinking it’s instinct. Their dreams of creating unique works of power and wonder are seldom, if ever, realized. They put in long, tough days, for no matter how it’s taken, the writer’s road is never smooth, and because they have a gift, from time to time their efforts draw applause, but in their secret selves they know they’re just taking talent for a walk… Write every day, line by line, page by page, hour by hour… Do this despite fear. For above all else, beyond imagination and skill, what the world asks of you is courage, courage to risk rejection, ridicule and failure. As you follow the quest for stories told with meaning and beauty, study thoughtfully but write boldly.”
– Robert McKee