I came across a wonderful little compilation of quotes on writing by writers from one of my used book forays: The Write Book edited by Bob Perlongo. I will present some of them on this thread as we go along, together with some extra research. They are simply charming. Here is the first by Annie Dillard. I really identify with it.
A well-known writer got collared by a university student who asked, ''Do you think I could be a writer?''
''Well,'' the writer said, ''I don't know. . . . Do you like sentences?''
The writer could see the student's amazement. Sentences? Do I like sentences? I am 20 years old and do I like sentences? If he had liked sentences, of course, he could begin, like a joyful painter I knew. I asked him how he came to be a painter. He said, ''I liked the smell of the paint.''
Here is the Wikipedia article on her: Annie Dillard
This appears to be from an 1989 essay by her. Here is the NYT online publication of it: Write Till You Drop.