A Wordplayer’s Manifesto

To make the most of your life as a writer, you must understand the core principles and defining moments of being an author. You must boldly claim your goals, and you must remember, refine, and renew your commitments every day. To help you keep your sights set high, you need to declare yourself to yourself, as well as the rest of the world.

To that end, today I’d like to share “A Wordplayer’s Manifesto.”

Click on the image for a larger view. Right click to save. Feel free to save it to your desktop, print it out, share on your own website—whatever you need to do to declare yourself a writer of words!

Wordplayers, tell me your opinions! Do you have a writing manifesto? Tell me in the comments!

Sign Up Today

hwba sidebar pic

Sign up to receive K.M. Weiland’s e-letter and receive her free e-book Crafting Unforgettable Characters: A Hands-On Introduction to Bringing Your Characters to Life.

About K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland

K.M. Weiland is the award-winning and internationally-published author of the acclaimed writing guides Outlining Your Novel, Structuring Your Novel, and Creating Character Arcs. A native of western Nebraska, she writes historical and fantasy novels and mentors authors on her award-winning website Helping Writers Become Authors.


  1. Totally printed that out to post on my actual wall! Great collection of quotes.

  2. I didn’t before, but I do now! Thanks!

  3. @Elsa: Glad you enjoyed them!

    @Daniel: Claim away! Every writer needs a manifesto.

  4. Oh, so printing that out. Thanks!

  5. You’re welcome! I had a lot of fun putting it together.

  6. You got me with your first 2 lines. I’m sharing this on Pinterest on my inspiration board. Thanks!

  7. Thanks so much! I appreciate the share.

  8. Love it! Saved it. 🙂

  9. Thanks, Lorna! Happy manifestoing!

  10. This is beautiful. Thank you.

  11. That’s awesome. Just what I needed. Downloaded as my desktop background so will see every time turn on computer. 🙂

  12. @Linda: Thank you! I’m glad you enjoyed it.

    @Robin: A manifesto manifestation! 😉

  13. Thanks for this. I really needed to hear these writing affirmations today! I’m going to save it. 🙂

  14. The writing is very much about ups and downs. One minute we’re shouting our prowess from the hilltops, the next we’re grasping for inspiration. Glad the post was a moment of encouragement for you!

  15. Wow, this is lovely! Sharing and printing 😀

  16. This is so great! I’m going to have to share it on my blog and FB wall. I’d also like to hear your interpretation of “Write scared.”

    I love that “Put your ego in your back pocket and sit on it” bit! There are times when I hear a writer exaggerating his achievements, and I back away, underplaying mine for fear I will sound like him. It’s not easy to find the right middle ground of reaffirming what we do, but not boasting about it.

  17. @Skriblerlenz: Thanks for stopping by!

    @Carol: Long answer to my “write scared” philosophy can be found in this post. Short answer is that I believe our best writing comes when we throw aside our inhibitions about our abilities and our fears about content and write anyway. Some of the best writing is done by terrified authors!

  18. On A Wordplayer’s Manifesto, thank you for the gentle reminder 🙂

  19. Ah, I obviously missed that earlier post. I see what you mean about “pushin’ the boundaries”. Thanks. 🙂

  20. @Rich: Thank you, as always, for stopping by!

    @Carol: Writing’s scary anyway, right? Why not put that fear to good use? 🙂

  21. This is the best author’s blog and encouragement resource I have seen for writers anywhere: and I am a writing teacher and constantly looking for resources to pass on. I will certainly be sending people this way. Congratulations and the very best of luck with your work.

  22. Wow! You know how to make a gal’s day. 😉 Thanks for stopping by! I’m tickled pink you’ve enjoyed the blog so much.

  23. Fantastic! All the “write” encouragements and bits of inspiration in one great design. Thank you. I’d like to post this on my blog with a link back to here, and with hopes that others will come along and discover your helpful blog, too 🙂

  24. Thanks for linking to it! I’m pleased as punch you found in the manifesto encouraging, and I appreciate your sharing it with others!

  25. Love the “Wordplayer’s Manifesto”! I’m pasting it and printing it off…I’ll put it on my desk beside the computer where I an see it everyday! Awesome post…thanks:)

  26. Katie,
    Love your Manifesto. You said what I feel but hadn’t bothered to put on the page, any page. I’m glad to you explained “Write scared” to Carol. It means what I thought it means. Which means I’m on the same page. Well done, as usual.

  27. I love the Writer’s Creed you stated!! Copying.

  28. @Lorna: I feel like, as writers, we can sometimes get so embroiled in the difficult nitty-gritties of the craft that we can lose sight of the big picture. Keeping sight of that big picture is one of the reasons I created the Manifesto – so I’m thrilled you’re putting it someplace where you can be reminded daily.

    @Bill: The only writer who never experiences a little fear is one who isn’t taking chances and pushing himself. That’s not the kind of writer I want to be.

    @Traci: Glad you enjoyed it!

  29. that’s a superb manifesto, I need to print it out and put it on the wall en framed. Well done! :))

  30. Thanks for stopping by, Grigory!

  31. My favorite is line #4 (Read read read). My problem is that I’m so bad at doing both in one day. When I read, I want to just read forever. When I write, I want to write forever. Doing both in equal amounts is difficult. This is a good way to keep things in perspective. Thanks!

  32. Sent this out to my writing critique group. Thanks for taking the time to create it and share it.
    One question though – leave it to me, I ask a lot of questions. Third line from the bottom. Outline, research, rewrite. Shouldn’t research come first, to find the heart of the story, then the outline?

  33. I too, love the “write scared.” I find when I’m not writing scared, the end product isn’t too good. When I’m not writing scared, I’m writing to the market, not out of my dream. Thank you for creating and sharing this, it’s perfect.

  34. @L.B.: I honestly don’t know that it’s a bad thing to devote a whole day to one task, so long as we balance it with another day devoted to another task. For me, schedules are my savior. Both writing time and reading time get scheduled every day – otherwise they don’t happen.

    @Jeanne: We all have our own methods and ways of organizing those methods, so, of course, this order is made to be flexible. However, for me, I prefer to outline first, so I know what specific questions I’ll need to answer while researching.

    @Audra: When we’re writing un-scared, we’re usually worrying too much about what other people will think, instead of just letting the story flow from that deep inner well of creativity.

  35. So inspiring! Tweeted and set as background.

    I like your term “Wordplayer”. Makes writing sound like fun (which, of course, it should be)!

  36. Well, since the blog is called Wordplay, I’ve fondly dubbed my readers Wordplayers!

  37. Learn the rules, follow the rules, break the rules. This is wonderful. As a writer still in his early years, it’s easy to convince myself that there is a set guideline I must follow. The more I read (books and blogs), and the more I write, the more I learn how untrue this is. I don’t liked to be restricted, and that is why I write.

  38. The rules are only guidelines, honed over the years and recognized because they’re techniques most readers understand, like, and resonate with. If breaking the rules with help them understanding something better, like you more, or resonate more deeply, break ’em!

  39. Love this. You need to get this set to music and have someone like Baz Luhrmann to do the reading of it.

    Cheeky of me, maybe, but if you’ve never heard the original go to Youtube and look up ‘Everybody’s Free to Wear Sunscreen (original version)’ – I almost posted the link, but I was concerned I get a ban 😉

  40. Fun idea! I read it aloud in the podcast version of the post, but it would be fun to get somebody with a big deep voice to do it.

  41. This is both challenging and encouraging. I am going to share this on my blog as a way of claiming this for my own writing life.

  42. Thanks, Adam! Any day in which we can be both challenged and encouraged is a good day.

  43. Pinned it – AND shared on my FB fan page. You rock, Ms. Weiland.

  44. Thanks for sharing it!

  45. Perfect. You put into words exactly what I feel in my heart. I’ll most likely end up sharing and linking to you in the near future.

  46. You know what they say… great minds think alike. 😉 Glad you enjoyed the manifesto and thanks so much sharing!

  47. I just printed this out too and am sharing everywhere. Thank you for yet more inspiration! I need it!

  48. Thanks for sharing! I’m glad you found a spark of inspiration in it!

  49. Great resource! I’ve printed a copy for my own desk (may even try to find a nice frame for it “a 5×7?”) and I’m blogging a link to this page so my readers can download a copy at your site. Thanks for this inspirational resource!

  50. Thanks so much for sharing! A framed desk photo, huh? That makes me grin. 😉

  51. Hrvoje Bulat says

    K.M. – you rock!!! 🙂

    Great poster!

    I saved it, and I’ll print it to have it near me.

    Keep up being a God’s given child and author.

    Thank you for your inspiration!

  52. This is so great. You have articulated everything I need to tell myself in order to succeed, everything I feel when I am in tune with my writerly self. Thank-you!

  53. Dawna DeArman says

    Ms Weiland, I just discovered you today and I have purchased a set of books as well as downloaded one or two of your free books and plan to spend the evening learning from you. It has been a real struggle trying to find just the right book for me, because I have some stroke damage and writing my books has been a lesson I keep forgetting! lol I must relearn everything constantly and I am finding your efforts an amazing help.

    The way my brain doesn’t work anymore, I figure I will be spending a lot of time in your books and watching your podcast!

    Thank you so very much!

  54. I am new to this list. Thank you for the manifesto. I will share it with my writers group next month.

    Thank you also for the free downloads. I appreciate them.

  55. Thank you very much for the manifesto and all the freebies!

    I bought the Kindle version of creating Character Arcs today.



  1. […] (Besides this awesome manifesto, Kim’s site is full of concise writing advice. Well worth the … […]

  2. […] Weiland came out with one of my favourite word-image manifestos in 2012, the one-page Wordplayer’s Manifesto (download from blog). If you signup to her newslist you’ll receive ‘Crafting […]

  3. […] I have K.M. Weiland’s ‘Wordplayer’s Manifesto’ printed out, framed, and prominently displayed on my computer desk. It inspires […]

  4. […] out there to borrow, ranging from poster-size typography sheets, to PDF downloads. [KM Weiland’s Wordplay Manifesto to  the right is a great typography example. Jeff Goin’s The Writer’s Manifesto is a popular […]

  5. […] (Besides this awesome manifesto, Kim’s site is full of concise writing advice. Well worth the … […]

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.