10 inspirational quotes that will make you curl up with a book tonight (+ free book art print)

Famous inspirational quotes about books, reading, and knowledge and a free printable Kathleen Norris quote art print.


I woke up one morning last week and did. not. want. to. write. Not one email; not one proposal; not one sentence. I wanted to roll over, reach for a book on my nightstand, and burrow into the covers for a day of reading.

Maybe it’s that fall hibernation was kicking in, but it was just one of those days. You know those days when all you want is your warm, soft, pillowy bed and a great book to escape into? Or maybe you want to curl on the couch with ten or twenty blankets, a bowl of slow cooker chili, and that book you’ve been dying to read?

I hear ya.

good book at the end of a long day kathleen norris quote art print

But here’s the thing: fall is such a busy season in the publishing world (only a few good weeks left for submissions!), so early morning reading is out. And after a long day of work, I’m usually too drained by the time I get into bed to reach for my nightstand stack of books to read.

The solution? Reading Night.

(Doesn’t that just sound fun?!)

Reading Night is a pact between you and whoever you live with—husbands, roommates, toddlers, unemployed dogs named Pepper—to throw your cares to the wind for a night and do nothing but read. Anyone can declare a Reading Night whenever they need it. It’s kind of like a pause button on life–it slows and hushes the house for just a few hours on an otherwise insane-o week.

Here’s what you do:

Cancel or reschedule all your plans or appointments (it’s okay to be this person every once in awhile); pop something stupid-easy in the slow cooker or oven (might I recommend this or this?); collect blankets, pillows, and other nesting apparatus; park yourself on the couch with a book and a bowl of something stewy. Repeat for the rest of the night, until you feel better about the day and all of life.

But I get it–pressing pause to read a book all night is not always easy.

I know how hard it is  to extract ourselves from our everyday pressures for even one night. Some nights, I try to relax, but all I can think about is the 1,000 things I should be doing and how I can’t waste another minute not getting started.

But a Reading Night is something families, marriages, kids, you need. That’s because it’s not only about books. It’s about a few precious hours of quiet, without screens, without to-dos, where we can remember that, as C.S. Lewis said, “we are not alone.”

So to celebrate how good it feels to come home to a book and to a Reading Night, I created this free book art print with the Kathleen Norris quote: “Just the knowledge that a good book is awaiting one at the end of a long day makes that day happier.”

good book at the end of a long day kathleen norris quote art print

Click here to download this free book quote art print!

And if you need more inspiration to let go and pause a little tonight, here are 10 quotes that will remind you just how good a Reading Night can be. I hope these 10 quotes by famous writers will help you unplug and escape into the magic of a book for a night, or at least into your pillowy bed for a few extra minutes. 🙂

10 Inspirational Quotes by Famous Writers About Books and Reading

good book at the end of a long day kathleen norris quote art print

“Just the knowledge that a good book is awaiting one at the end of a long day makes that day happier.” – Kathleen Norris

“In the case of good books the point is not to see how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you.” – Mortimer J. Adler

“We read to know that we are not alone.” – C.S. Lewis

“We read in bed because reading is halfway between life and dreaming.” – Anna Quindlen

“Between the pages of a book is a lovely place to be.” – Unknown

“A book is proof that humans can work magic.” – Carl Sagan

“Where I am, if I’ve got a book with me, I have a place I can go and be happy.” – J.K. Rowling

“Of all things, I liked books best.” – Nikola Tesla

“I do not read for I have renounced life. I read because one life is just not enough for me.” – Abbas Al-Akkad

“Eating and reading are two pleasures that combine admirably.” – C.S. Lewis

(By the way, you can also download this C.S. Lewis quote on reading and eating as a free printable art print here!)

Want more bookish printables and reminders to slow down and read? Get them all in for free by signing up for access to The Library here!

You’ll find:

Cozy Printable Fall Bookmarks with John Green Quote (free printable)
Get Lost in a Book” Desktop & Mobile Wallpaper (free download)
“I have always imagined paradise to be a kind of library” Jorge Luis Borges Quote Art Print (free printable)


What I’m Reading This Week

How to Develop a Book Concept that Has Bestseller Potential (Chad R. Allen): I see writers and bloggers struggle with this all the time–they’re not, as Chad puts it, “acknowledging the gap.” Here’s how to really understand what readers want.

How To Be a Know-It-All (Kathryn Schulz for The New Yorker): My favorite read of the week (maybe month?). I’ll just leave this here: “They appeal to us because the world is vast and strange, because everywhere we look, from the firefly flashing in the darkness to Auden’s elegy for Yeats, there is something to provoke our curiosity, some sliver of existence that we want to understand. Not everyone longs to be a polymath, but everyone who does is a philomath—someone who loves knowledge qua knowledge, who finds it moving, joyful, comforting, fun, startling, awe-inspiring.”

11 of the Most Instagrammable Book Shops in the World (Charlotte Ahlin for Bustle): Pretty bookshops are my drug. And now I’ll have to follow every one of these accounts. (FYI, you can also follow me here if you want more book eye candy!)

How to Rock NaNoWriMo This November (Kristen Kieffer of Well-Storied): Are you doing the National Novel Writing Month challenge this year? I’ve heard it’s fuuuuunnnn. If so, start with Kristen’s easy tips to make it more enjoyable + productive!

Book Publishers Go Back to Basics (Zeke Turner for The Wall Street Journal): Print books are back? Print books are back! Put down the screen and pick one up tonight.


What We’re Eating This Week

Jarrett, Pepper, and I zipped down to Richmond for a day or two for a few work things, so this week has been completely confusing. Here’s what I think happened:

Monday: Well, since Richmond was named one of the Top 5 Food Cities by Garden & Gun, we had to try every single place mentioned in the article, right? Rappahannock was Sunday dinner; Sally Bell’s was Monday lunch; Saison was Monday dinner; Wheelbarrow Me Out of This Town was the theme.

Tuesday: Just kidding. Time for fried chicken and mac and cheese at Mama J’s! Yolo, guys, yolo.

Wednesday: Yolo = now I have a stomach ache. How cool am I. Penitence salad for dinner, it is. (But with extra salami, of course).

Thursday: Chicken and Veggie Curry, so at least we ate one normal, homemade thing this week.

Friday: Old-school lasagna for dinner! Friday, I love you.

Cheers!

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10 quotes that remind us how much we love books (+ free book art print)

The best famous writers’s inspirational quotes about life, writing, books, and reading.

I walked into my favorite bookstore last week, and I was immediately hit by a wave of relief. I stood at the front of the store, looking at a table covered in books, feeling a weight lifting from me.

There was something so luxurious and indulgent about having 15 whole minutes to take in the store, to wander from shelf to shelf and see all the beauty and knowledge bound up and displayed.  I had only a few minutes to pick up a gift before the parade of to-dos set in for the day, but as soon as I got that first breath of bookstore air, I stopped checking my phone and my clock.

i have always thought of paradise as a library quote art print

Isn’t there just something magical about walking in a bookstore? There’s something holy and sacred about it to me, and sometimes it catches my breath how good it feels. It feels like the whole world laid out before me, thousands of interesting voices and people and places and wisdom and adventures to pluck into an afternoon.

It reminds me why I believe in books, and it reminds me why it’s important that writers keep writing and keep sharing their work.

I also know how easy it is to lose sight of that.

Trust me: when you’re working on the nitty gritty of making a physical book, it’s easy to lose touch of that end payoff, that holding-the-book-and-feeling-the-magic moment that we all work so hard for.

But over many years of working on books and flowing through cycles of inspiration and overwhelm, I’ve found that there are other ways to keep the magic alive, even when you can’t get yourself some time to soak up a bookstore.

And by far, one of my favorite ways to get book inspiration is by scrolling through Pinterest (follow me there!) and finding inspiring quotes from writers and cute illustrations about the book lover’s life. (For instance, how cute is this book art?!)

The quotes, especially, give me such a jolt of remembering why I do what I do. And since I love saving my favorite inspirational quotes and turning them into book art, I created this printable art print with the Jorge Luis Borges quote, “I have always imagined paradise to be a kind of library.” You can download it for free here!

I have always imagined paradise as a library jorge luis borges quote

Download this free book art print here!

 

And in case you also need a little more motivation and inspiration today, here are my 10 best inspirational quotes about writing, as well as my favorite quotes about books and reading. I hope they remind you how good being a book lover can be!

10 Quotes That Remind Us How Much We Love Books

best quotes by writers about books

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10 book art prints to inspire you to read more

Jarrett and I watched The Little Prince last week, and I am smitten. Why had no one told me how cute this movie was when it first came out?!

I loved every bit of it: the gorgeous paper cut-out animation, the thoughtfully done adaptation and expansion of the storyline, the themes of finding adventure and wonder in books. The movie did a great job of keeping the ethereal and delicate tone of the book yet overlaying the struggles of modern life: how the cult of productivity and busyness has made for less spontaneous and unscheduled childhoods (and adulthoods!).

It made me feel like a little kid again–it’s that same happy, giddy feeling you get when you read a great book. So, in honor of The Little Prince, the start of spring, and the very cutest Google doodle (did you catch it on Monday?), I thought it would be fun to share some of my favorite reading illustrations and art prints.

Reading and book art prints

I have a whole board of reading and book art prints on Pinterest, and sometimes I just open them up to smile and remember what it is that I love so much in books. (Follow me there, if you want more!)

10 Reading Art Prints to Remind You to Believe in Books

Reading and book art prints

(Source: Simini Blocker)

Reading and book art prints 7

(Source: Doodlemum)

Reading and book art prints

(Source: unknown)

Reading and book art prints

(Source: unknown)

Reading and book art prints

(Source: part of a WPA series)

Reading and book art prints

(Source: Monica Castanys)

   Reading and book art prints 5

(Source: Book/Shop)

Reading and book art prints

(Source: Book Geek Confessions)

Reading and book art prints

(Source: Sarah Wilkins)

Reading and book art prints

(Source: unknown)


What I’m Reading This Week

Stop Focusing on Follower Count: 5 Better Approaches for Improving Social Media Use (Andrea Dunlop on JaneFriedman.com): This is such great advice–I see follower count trip up so many authors, yet it just isn’t an accurate predictor of the success of your book. Instead, focus on these 5 goals to stay motivated as you grow your author platform.

Writing the review in advance (Seth Godin): “The last click someone clicks before they buy something isn’t the moment they made up their mind. … We lay clues. That’s what it takes to change the culture and to cause action. The thing we make matters (a lot). But the breadcrumbs leading up to that thing, the conversations we hear, the experiences that are shared, the shadow we cast–we start doing that days, months and years before.”

The business of posting recipes online (Dreena Burton of Plant-Powered Kitchen): There isn’t a blogger out there who hasn’t had to work through this same emotional mire of seeing their work copied without credit, so it’s great to see a blogger discuss this so openly and yet so positively.

5 Scientifically Verified Reasons You’ll Hate Yourself if You Stop Writing (Chad Allen): “So much of winning at the writing game can be summarized succinctly in the immemorial words of Dory in Finding Nemo: Just keep swimming.”

How I Won 12 Book Awards for My Memoir (Judith Newton on Dianne Jacob’s blog):  Memoir can be a tough category to break-out in, so start here if you’re looking for ways to build buzz for your work!

10 Empowering Writer’s Retreats for Women (Ellen Turner on The Write Life): Feeling a little blah or overwhelmed in your writing life? Sounds like you need a retreat!


What We’re Eating This Week

What’s for dinner? Why, I thought you’d never ask!

Monday: Grilled shrimp greek salads, because Monday.

Tuesday: Chicken fajitas, made with a recipe by my author Robyn of Add a Pinch (Have you preordered her gorgeous book yet? It’s a weeknight lifesaver!)

Wednesday: Spaghetti with salumi and endives, adapted from Back Pocket Pasta by Colu Henry. Lordy, I love that book.

Thursday: The notes in my phone say: “Asian slow-cooked beef and mushrooms with rice and broccoli and snow peas.” AKA throw everything in the fridge in a pot, cover in sauce, cook, and serve over rice. #fancy

Friday: Last weekend Jarrett and I went to this fabulous event at the Museum of American History about the women behind America’s first cookbooks, and they demoed chicken croquettes and tomato butter sauce from The Virginia Housewife by Mary Randolph. All I had to hear was “add a stick of butter to the tomato sauce” and, boom, it was added to the meal plan. I’m powerful like that. (But actually, please say a little prayer for me in executing these–I’m cooking them as a birthday dinner for my mother-in-law and want them not to be, as Mary Randolph would put it, intolerable.)

Cheers!