Monday, March 12, 2012

Collecting Words

I love words.  And as Steve Jobs so eloquently put it...

“the only way to do great work is to love what you do.  If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking.  Don’t settle.  As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.”  (Steve Jobs)

No surprise that I am working my journey as a writer. 
But regardless, I have begun collecting words. 

“What do you read, my lord?” 
“Words, words, words.” (Hamlet, Act II, ii) 

In my reading, or researching, or cyber-stalking, networking, I, all too often, happen upon those perfect words, all strung together like an exquisite pearl necklace.  And a small bell rings in my soul.  

So, I have started to save words.  You know, those quotable quotes that pop up on Facebook, Pinterest, blogs, fortune cookies, and even in email signature.  Like...
Be the change you want to see in the world”  (Ghandi)
So in addition to my First Line collection, I have begun another collection -- of words.  Some can be found on my Pinterest board. On my website, and on my computer desktop.  All of them add a little inspiration, community and philosophy to my day. Like...
“...What disturbed him was the discovery that in sensibly ordering his affairs he had got out of step, and not into step, with Life.”  
(Dashiell Hammett)
And in my quest toward minimalism, okay to be honest, I am nowhere close to minimalism, but I am working on reducing my stuff, yet I can still satisfy my collection gene.  The saving of written quotes does not add to more stuff.  And to quote one of our own...
“it will all work out.”  (President Gordon B. Hinckley)
So here are a few more of my favorite quotes. 
“The woman who follows the crowd will usually go no further than the crowd.  The woman who walks alone is likely to find herself in places no one has ever been before.”  (Albert Einstein)
If the track is tough and the hill is rough, THINKING you can just ain’t enough! 
(from The Little Blue Engine by Shel Silverstein)
“Stuart rose from the ditch, climbed into his car, and started up the road that led toward the north…. As he peeked ahead into the great land that stretched before him, the way seemed long. But the sky was bright, and he somehow felt he was headed in  
the right direction.”(from Stuart Little by E.B. White)
"Now I say that with cruelty and oppression it is everybody’s business to interfere when they see it." 
(from Black Beauty  by Anna Sewell)
"Start where you are.  Use what you have. Do what you can." (Arthur Ashe)

“Housekeeping ain’t no joke.” (Little Women by Louissa May Alcott)
So be sure when you step.  Step with care and great tact and remember that LIfe's a Great Balancing Act. 
(Oh the Places You'll Go by Dr. Seuss)
Uncle Edisto always said, “It takes courage to look life in the eye and say yes to…the messy glory.” (from Each Little Bird That Sings by Deborah Wiles)
“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.”  (Matthew 7:7)
So I pulled on my chain mail.  
“I thought that was for slaying dragons, not for talking to girls,” said Anibelly, who had appeared behind me.    
“It’s the same thing,” I said. 
(from Alvin-Ho: Allergic To Birthday Parties, Science Projects, and Other Man-Made Casastrophes by Lenore Look)

Calories (noun):  tiny creatures that live in your closet and sew your clothes a little bit tighter every night.  (Anonymous)
Do you have a favorite quote?  Please share.  
Or is there something you collect that doesn’t take up space?  Feel free to tell about it.


  1. Catherine Marshall, who wrote Christy, used to keep journals full of quotes she'd collected.

    I love all of these, but I think my favorite is the one about the Calories. I can just picture Borrower/Cobbler-type fairies busily stitching and snickering in my closet.

    Thanks for the giggle.

    1. I think it must be true. LOL. Thanks for stopping by.

  2. Great quotes, Suzanne! LEt's favorite is, from Virginia Woolf:
    "... So I have to create the whole thing afresh for myself each time. Probably all writers now are in the same boat. It is the penalty we pay for breaking with tradition, and the solitude makes the writing more exciting though the being read less so. One ought to sink to the bottom of the sea, probably, and live alone with ones words."

    1. Oh, I love that quote. Thanks for adding to my collection.

    2. I love quotes too. Those are some great ones you've listed. Here's one of my favorites
      "When people ask me if these stories are true, I prefer to say that they are true enough." David Sedaris

    3. That's another good one to add to my collection. Thank you.

  3. Loved your collection of quotes. One of my favorites, is a watered down Churchill quote used in Galaxy Quest: "Never give up!. Never surrender!"

    1. Perfect quote for the writing life! Thanks EW.

  4. My mom had a quote-or down South we call it a "saying:" If a neighbor asks to borrow a cup of sugar, give her two. I didn't understand until I grew up.
    I loved all your quotes!

    1. Thanks for stopping by Sandy, I love Southern sayings! Great idea for another collection and another blog post.

  5. Thank you for this, Susanne! I love words, too.
    I subscribe to A.Word.A.Day which sends to me by email, as promised, a word a day, complete with its definition, pronunciation, and historical source. It also includes a quote and I have collected some that I don't want to slip away from memory. Here are two:
    And the fox said to the little prince: men have forgotten this truth, but you must not forget it. You become responsible, forever, for what you have tamed. -Antoine de Saint-Exupery, author and aviator (1900-1945)
    True, no matter if you are talking about an animal or nuclear fission.

    Don't tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass. -Anton Chekhov, short-story writer and dramatist (1860-1904)
    This one is printed out and pasted over my monitor ;-)

    1. These are fabulous Dianna. Thanks so much for stopping by and adding two gems to my collection. I will look up the word-a-day as well.

  6. my mama raised me on old sayings. she
    added to this and it's one of my favorites.
    'Don't cry over spilled milk. Feed the cow and milk her again'

    and my uncle's: 'I'm not as stupid as I look. This is just a disguise I'm wearing'

    lou buffkin

    1. "Feed the cow and milk her again" How perfect! Especially for a writer. Love it, thanks for stopping by lou

  7. I also love words. My first blog was about words. My favorite quote is "I can't understand why a person will take a year to write a novel when he can easily buy one for a few dollars." ~ Fred Allen By the way, I just became your 50th follower! I'm stuck at 49 (sigh) and have been for awhile. I enjoyed your post and will be back for more.

    1. Thanks so much for following. I just became your 50th follower, must be destiny. I know how you feel, the sigh for 49. Well, we are there now. Onward to 100! Thanks for the quote too.

  8. Nice post. As a lover of words you might be interested in the word play involved in cryptic crosswords. I am doing a series of posts on solving cryptic clues. This was the first one I did. Hope you enjoy.

    1. Thanks for stopping by. I will definitely head over and check out your cryptic crosswords.