“The muse is not an angelic voice that sits on your shoulder and sings sweetly. The muse is the most annoying whine. The muse isn’t hard to find, just hard to like – she follows you everywhere, tapping you on the shoulder, demanding that you stop doing whatever else you might be doing and pay attention to her.”

-Harlan Coben

INTERVIEWER

What is the best part of writing for you?

ANGELOU

Well, I could say the end. But when the language lends itself to me, when it comes and submits, when it surrenders and says, I am yours, darling—that’s the best part.

via Paris Review – The Art of Fiction No. 119, Maya Angelou.

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“Storytelling is an act of cruelty. We are cruel to our characters because to be kind is to invite boredom, and boredom in storytelling is synonymous with big doomy death-shaped death. So: be cruel to your protagonist. Rob him of something. Something important. Something he needs. A weapon. An asset. A piece of knowledge. A loved one. A DELICIOUS PIE. Take it away! Force him to operate without it. Conflict reinvigorates stale stories. New conflict, or old conflict that has evolved and grown teeth.”

Chuck Wendig