70 Best Ernest Hemingway Quotes About Writing, Life & Success

Ernest Hemingway famous quotes

In this post, we will delve into the world of Ernest Hemingway quotes* who was an American author and journalist.

Ernest Hemingway (1899–1961) was widely considered one of the most influential writers of the 20th century. He served as an ambulance driver during World War I, and his experiences in Italy inspired his novel “A Farewell to Arms.” He traveled a lot in his life and spent time in Paris during the 1920s as part of the “Lost Generation” of American expatriates.

In addition to his fiction, Hemingway worked as a journalist, reporting on various conflicts, including the Spanish Civil War and World War II.

His major works include “The Old Man and the Sea” (1952), “A Farewell to Arms” (1929), and “For Whom the Bell Tolls” (1940).

He often wrote about themes such as courage, stoicism, and the “code hero” which is a concept reflecting a character’s ability to face life’s challenges with grace under pressure.

Let’s read some of the best Ernest Hemingway quotes on love, life, success, writing and more.

Ernest Hemingway Quotes

Ernest Hemingway Quote

1. “The first draft of anything is shit.”
2. “Would you please please please please please please please stop talking?”
3. “Never think that war, no matter how necessary, nor how justified, is not a crime.”
4. “We are all broken—that’s how the light gets in.”
5. “I’m not brave any more darling. I’m all broken. They’ve broken me.”
6. “You are so brave and quiet I forget you are suffering.”
7. “My aim is to put down on paper what I see and what I feel in the best and simplest way.”
8. “I didn’t want to kiss you goodbye — that was the trouble — I wanted to kiss you good night — and there’s a lot of difference.”
9. “How did you go bankrupt?. Two ways. Gradually, then suddenly.”
10. “All my life I’ve looked at words as though I were seeing them for the first time.”
11. “I love sleep. My life has the tendency to fall apart when I’m awake, you know?”

Famous Ernest Hemingway Quotes

Famous Ernest Hemingway Quote

1. “But man is not made for defeat… A man can be destroyed but not defeated.”
2. “Courage is grace under pressure.”
3. “You can’t get away from yourself by moving from one place to another.”
4. “All things truly wicked start from innocence.”
5. “I drink to make other people more interesting.”
6. “As a writer, you should not judge, you should understand.”
7. “Never to go on trips with anyone you do not love.”

Inspirational Ernest Hemingway Quotes About Success

Inspirational Ernest Hemingway Quote About Success

1. “If you have a success you have it for the wrong reasons. If you become popular it is always because of the worst aspects of your work.”
2. “Never confuse movement with action.”
3. “The first and final thing you have to do in this world is to last it and not be smashed by it.”
4. “Now is no time to think of what you do not have.”
5. “When you start to live outside yourself, it’s all dangerous.”
6. “Every day is a new day. It is better to be lucky. But I would rather be exact. Then when luck comes you are ready.”
7. “But, then, nothing is easy.”

Ernest Hemingway Quotes About Life

Ernest Hemingway Quote About Life

1. “But life isn’t hard to manage when you’ve nothing to lose.”
2. “Don’t you ever get the feeling that all your life is going by and you’re not taking advantage of it? Do you realize you’ve lived nearly half the time you have to live already?”
3. “There is nothing else than now. There is neither yesterday, certainly, nor is there any tomorrow. How old must you be before you know that? There is only now, and if now is only two days, then two days is your life and everything in it will be in proportion. This is how you live a life in two days. And if you stop complaining and asking for what you never will get, you will have a good life. A good life is not measured by any biblical span.”
4. “Worry a little bit every day and in a lifetime you will lose a couple of years. If something is wrong, fix it if you can. But train yourself not to worry: Worry never fixes anything.”
5. “I can’t stand it to think my life is going so fast and I’m not really living it.”
6. “Live the full life of the mind, exhilarated by new ideas, intoxicated by the Romance of the unusual.”

Ernest Hemingway Quotes About Writing

Ernest Hemingway Quote About Writing

1. “The hard part about writing a novel is finishing it.”
2. “After writing a story I was always empty and both sad and happy, as though I had made love, and I was sure this was a very good story although I would not know truly how good until I read it over the next day.”
3. “All modern American literature comes from one book by Mark Twain called 1. Huckleberry Finn. American writing comes from that. There was nothing before. There has been nothing as good since.”
4. “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.”
5. “Forget your personal tragedy. We are all bitched from the start and you especially have to hurt like hell before you can write seriously. But when you get the damned hurt use it—don’t cheat with it. Be as faithful to it as a scientist—but don’t think anything is of any importance because it happens to you or anyone belonging to you.”
6. “It’s none of their business that you have to learn how to write. Let them think you were born that way.”
7. “Write hard and clear about what hurts.”
8. “All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence that you know.”
9. “In order to write about life first you must live it.”
10. “The most essential gift for a good writer is a built-in, shockproof, shit detector.
11. “There is no rule on how to write. Sometimes it comes easily and perfectly; sometimes it’s like drilling rock and then blasting it out with charges.”
12. “All good books are alike in that they are truer than if they had really happened and after you are finished reading one you will feel that all that happened to you and afterwards it all belongs to you: the good and the bad, the ecstasy, the remorse and sorrow, the people and the places and how the weather was. If you can get so that you can give that to people, then you are a writer.”

Ernest Hemingway Quotes About Love

Ernest Hemingway Quote About Love

1. “No one you love is ever truly lost.”
2. “I am always in love.”
3. “We ate well and cheaply and drank well and cheaply and slept well and warm together and loved each other.”
4. “If two people love each other there can be no happy end to it.”
5. “I loved you when I saw you today and I loved you always but I never saw you before.”
6. “I’m not unfaithful, darling. I’ve plenty of faults but I’m very faithful. You’ll be sick of me I’ll be so faithful.”
7. “You’ve such a lovely temperature.”
8. “You know I don’t love anyone but you. You shouldn’t mind because some one else loved me.”

Ernest Hemingway Quotes About Death

Ernest Hemingway Quote About Death

1. “Every man’s life ends the same way. It is only the details of how he lived and how he died that distinguish one man from another.”
2. “Why, darling, I don’t live at all when I’m not with you.”
3. “The real reason for not committing suicide is because you always know how swell life gets again after the hell is over.”

Ernest Hemingway Quotes About Friendship

Ernest Hemingway Quote About Friendship

1. “There is no friend as loyal as a book.”
2. “He liked the works of his friends, which is beautiful as loyalty but can be disastrous as judgement.”

Ernest Hemingway Quotes About Good Person

Ernest Hemingway Quotes About Good person


1. “The way to make people trust-worthy is to trust them.”
2. “The best people possess a feeling for beauty, the courage to take risks, the discipline to tell the truth, the capacity for sacrifice. Ironically, their virtues make them vulnerable; they are often wounded, sometimes destroyed.”
3. “When people talk listen completely. Don’t be thinking what you’re going to say. Most people never listen.”
4. “No, that is the great fallacy: the wisdom of old men. They do not grow wise. They grow careful.”
5. “Always do sober what you said you’d do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut.”
6. “So far, about morals, I know only that what is moral is what you feel good after and what is immoral is what you feel bad after.”
7. “It’s silly not to hope. It’s a sin he thought.”
8. “You know it makes one feel rather good deciding not to be a bitch.”

Ernest Hemingway Quotes About Man & Mankind

Ernest Hemingway Quote About Man & Mankind

1. “Let him think that I am more man than I am and I will be so.”
2. “All thinking men are atheists.”
3. “The world breaks everyone and afterward many are strong at the broken places.”
4. “An intelligent man is sometimes forced to be drunk to spend time with his fools.”
5. “Happiness in intelligent people is the rarest thing I know.”
6. “The most painful thing is losing yourself in the process of loving someone too much, and forgetting that you are special too.”
7. “There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.”

These Ernest Hemingway quotes reflect his thoughts and writing style which was known for its simplicity, clarity, and powerful impact.

He often used a concise and understated style, which had a strong influence on modern literature. His journalistic writing was also direct and factual.

His personal life was marked by a series of marriages and relationships. In the latter part of his life, Hemingway faced health issues and struggled with mental health. He tragically took his own life on July 2, 1961, at the age of 61.

His works are celebrated for their exploration of the human experience, resilience, and the complexities of life.

*cited Ernest Hemingway quotes are not all his but are also from the characters in his novels.

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