Wilde Words of Advice


One of the things I love most about Mr. Wilde is how he seems to have the perfect words for any occasion. So, as a writer, when the following situations come up, here are some points of wisdom from Oscar Wilde to remember.


When you need to find your voice:

Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.


When you lose that brilliant idea:

Some things are more precious because they don’t last long.


When someone tells you what your book needs:

The only good thing to do with good advice is pass it on; it is never of any use to oneself.


When writer’s block scares words away, calm down and remember:

Some things are too important to be taken seriously.


When you get caught people watching:

My own business always bores me to death; I prefer other people’s.


When you write the perfect paragraph:

Words! Mere words! How terrible they were! How clear, and vivid, and cruel! One could not escape from them. And yet what a subtle magic there was in them! They seemed to be able to give a plastic form to formless things, and to have a music of their own as sweet as that of viol or of lute. Mere words! Was there anything so real as words?


When you have to kill a character:

Each man kills the thing he loves.


When someone asks you why you write:

I don’t want to be at the mercy of my emotions. I want to use them, to enjoy them, and to dominate them.


When someone believes your work is good when you don’t:

It is so easy to convince others; it is so difficult to convince oneself.


The dreadful and wonderful thing known as editing:

 I was working on the proof of one of my poems all the morning, and took out a comma. In the afternoon I put it back again.


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