Literary Birthday – 11 July – E. B. White

E. B. White was born 11 July 1899, and died 1 October 1985.


  1. I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve the world and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes it hard to plan the day.
  2. I’ve never had a very lively literary curiosity, and it has sometimes seemed to me that I am not really a literary fellow at all. Except that I write for a living.
  3. It is not often that someone comes along who is a true friend and a good writer. Charlotte was both.
  4. I have occasionally had the exquisite thrill of putting my finger on a little capsule of truth, and heard it give the faint squeak of mortality under my pressure
  5. Necessity first mothered invention. Now invention has little ones of her own, and they look just like grandma.
  6. When I get sick of what men do, I have only to walk a few steps in another direction to see what spiders do. Or what the weather does. This sustains me very well indeed.
  7. Be obscure clearly.
  8. When you consider that there are a thousand ways to express even the simplest idea, it is no wonder writers are under a great strain. Writers care greatly how a thing is said — it makes all the difference. So they are constantly faced with too many choices and must make too many decisions.
  9. One of the most time-consuming things is to have an enemy.
  10. Writing is an act of faith, not a trick of grammar.


  1. Hang On To Hope – A Letter By E.B. White
  2. 10 Elements Of Writing Style For Bloggers

Elwyn Brooks White was a leading American essayist, author, humourist, poet, and literary stylist. He was co-author of the English language style guide, The Elements of Style, which is commonly referred to as “Strunk & White”. He wrote books for children, and his most popular titles include Charlotte’s Web, Stuart Little, and The Trumpet of the Swan. Follow this link to find out where E.B. White wrote his books.

by Amanda Patterson

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Posted on: 11th July 2013

0 thoughts on “Literary Birthday – 11 July – E. B. White”

  1. There are so many wonderful writers whose thoughts lay hidden in many wonderful novels. I am standing below a mountain of books and, when I look up an infinite space stretches into the unknown, obscuring the summit. I am such a slow reader; I take eternity to finish a book. But then what do spiders do all day or the weather for the matter? Why do I fret? Because there are writers like E.B. White whose novels I still haven’t read.