End of the Year Inspiration: Black Authors Speak about Storytelling

We all need some inspiration. Writers especially need to be inspired, and below you will find 10 quotes by 10 authors to assist you on the journey.

“To know how much there is to know is the beginning of learning to live.” -Dorothy West (The Richer, the Poorer)

“For while the tale of how we suffer, and how we are delighted, and how we may triumph is never new, it always must be heard. There isn’t any other tale to tell, it’s the only light we’ve got in all this darkness.” -James Baldwin (Sonny’s Blues)

“The writer cannot expect to be excused from the task of reeducation and regeneration that must be done. In fact, he should march right in front.” -Chinua Achebe (The Novelist as Teacher, New Statesman)

“If one is lucky, a solitary fantasy can totally transform one million realities.” -Maya Angelou (The Heart of a Woman)

“When I read great literature, great drama, speeches, or sermons, I feel that the human mind has not achieved anything greater than the ability to share feelings and thoughts through language.” –James Earl Jones

“… the truest writers are those who see language not as a linguistic process but as a living element….” –Derek Walcott

“You can only become accomplished at something you love. Don’t make money your goal. Instead pursue the things you love doing and then do them so well that people can’t take their eyes off you.” –Maya Angelou

“If art doesn’t make us better, then what on earth is it for?” –Alice Walker

“An artist must be free to choose what he does, certainly, but he must also never be afraid to do what he might choose.” –Langston Hughes

“In my writing, as much as I could, I tried to find the good, and praise it.” –Alex Haley


Please feel free to use these quotes in your social media updates and shares. Print one out for your own personal (m)use.

Do you have a favorite author? If so, share a quote by them in the comment section. Thank you.

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