You don't need to be inspired to write a poem. You need to reach down and touch that thing that's boiling inside of you.
-- Audre Lorde
Form a habit of searching with unflinching patience for the right word, the only right word which will convey with the utmost precision the exact shade and intensity of thought.
Trying to use words, and every attempt
Is a wholly new start, and a different kind of failure
Because one has only learnt to get the better of words
For the thing one no longer has to say, or the way in which
One is no longer disposed to say it. And so each venture
Is a new beginning, a raid on the inarticulate
With shabby equipment always deteriorating
In the general mess of imprecision of feeling,
Undisciplined squads of emotion. And what there is to conquer
By strength and submission, has already been discovered
Once or twice or several times, by men whom one cannot hope
To emulate -- but there is no competition --
There is only the fight to recover what has been lost
And found and lost again and again: and now under conditions
That seem unpropitious. But perhaps neither gain nor loss.
For us, there is only the trying. The rest is not our business.
-- T. S. Eliot ("East Coker," Four Quartets)
Your good work stands. The rest of it makes money.
-- Larry L. King