Nimble Neil

A Pultizer Prize- winning dramatist, Neil Simon wrote 30 plays in 30 years – and many of the screenplays that brought them to the big screen. In his honor, a cornucopia of writing reflections:

“Writing is an escape from a world that crowds me. I like being alone in a room. It’s almost a form of meditation – an investigation of my own life.”

“Everyone thinks the can write a play; you just write down what happened to you. But the art of it is drawing from all the moments of your life.”

“Writers feel like a middleman, standing with pen in hand over the page. A force greater than me stands above telling me what to write. That may sound romantic, but that’s how it feels.”

“Rewriting is when writing really gets to be fun… In baseball you get only three swings and you’re out. In rewriting, you get almost as many swings as you want and you know, sooner or later, you’ll hit the ball.”

“It’s always painful when you’re writing memoirs, because you’ve got to go through the dark places, but it gives you a chance to find out the person you really are,not the person you thought you were.”

[When you write a play] you walk into a forest without a knife, a compass. But… if you have a sense of geography, you find that you’re clearing a path and getting to the right place.”

“I never write a play with an eye to film…. I much prefer writing an original movie with the screen in mind to transferring a play to the screen.”

“You get attached to the way you write, and I’m attached to notebooks. That’s really where I write the plays. Just two or three pages at a time, then I transfer to the typewriter and rewrite while I type.”

“I feel like writing about a time when I was probably, and I think all of us are, the happiest before the obligations start in.”

“Talent is the gift plus the passion – a desire to succeed so intense that no force on earth can stop it.”

“If you can go through life without pain, you probably haven’t been born yet.”

“If no one ever took risks, Michelangelo would have painted the Sistine floor.”

Bravo, Neil. And now, inspired and emboldened, let’s all write on!

About karinwritesdangerously

I am a writer and this is a motivational blog designed to help both writers and aspiring writers to push to the next level. Key themes are peak performance, passion, overcoming writing roadblocks, juicing up your creativity, and the joys of writing.
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