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Recent episodes:
Oct. 01, 2014: The Writer's Almanac
Poem: "For Jessica, My Daughter" by Mark Strand, and the literary and historical notes for Wednesday, October 1, 2014.

Sep. 30, 2014: The Writer's Almanac
Poem: "Still Morning" by W. S. Merwin, and the literary and historical notes for Tuesday, September 30, 2014.

Sep. 29, 2014: The Writer's Almanac
Poem: "We drove across high prairie..." by Athena Kildegaard, and the literary and historical notes for Monday, September 29, 2014.

Sep. 28, 2014: The Writer's Almanac
Poem: "Heaven" by Margaret Gibson, and the literary and historical notes for Sunday, September 28, 2014.

Sep. 27, 2014: The Writer's Almanac
Poem: "A City Girl Feeds Country Cows" by Sandra Becker, and the literary and historical notes for Saturday, September 27, 2014.

Sep. 26, 2014: The Writer's Almanac
Poem: "Elegy for the Giant Tortoises" by Margaret Atwood, and the literary and historical notes for Friday, September 26, 2014.

Sep. 25, 2014: The Writer's Almanac
Poem: "Once" by Jonathan Galassi, and the literary and historical notes for Thursday, September 25, 2014.



  • “Writers end up writing stories—or rather, stories' shadows—and they're grateful if they can, but it is not enough. Nothing the writer can do is ever enough” —Joy Williams
  • “I want to live other lives. I've never quite believed that one chance is all I get. Writing is my way of making other chances.” —Anne Tyler
  • “Writing is a performance, like singing an aria or dancing a jig” —Stephen Greenblatt
  • “All good writing is swimming under water and holding your breath.” —F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • “Good writing is always about things that are important to you, things that are scary to you, things that eat you up.” —John Edgar Wideman
  • “In certain ways writing is a form of prayer.” —Denise Levertov
  • “Writing is a socially acceptable form of schizophrenia.” —E.L. Doctorow
  • “Writing is like driving at night in the fog. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.” —E.L. Doctorow
  • “Let's face it, writing is hell.” —William Styron
  • “A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.” —Thomas Mann
  • “Writing is 90 percent procrastination: reading magazines, eating cereal out of the box, watching infomercials.” —Paul Rudnick
  • “Writing is a failure. Writing is not only useless, it's spoiled paper.” —Padget Powell
  • “Writing is very hard work and knowing what you're doing the whole time.” —Shelby Foote
  • “I think all writing is a disease. You can't stop it.” —William Carlos Williams
  • “Writing is like getting married. One should never commit oneself until one is amazed at one's luck.” —Iris Murdoch
  • “The less conscious one is of being ‘a writer,’ the better the writing.” —Pico Iyer
  • “Writing is…that oddest of anomalies: an intimate letter to a stranger.” —Pico Iyer
  • “Writing is my dharma.” —Raja Rao
  • “Writing is a combination of intangible creative fantasy and appallingly hard work.” —Anthony Powell
  • “I think writing is, by definition, an optimistic act.” —Michael Cunningham
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