113 Best Stephen King Quotes Of All Time

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Stephen King quote

The very first time I was introduced to Stephen King was through the film adaptation of his novel, Misery. Most find it surprising I didn’t see or read his first novel, Carrie beforehand. Nonetheless, I was instantly captivated by King’s ability to curate suspense and horror.

Misery scared me to death at the time, as many other of King’s novels and films would do later on in life.

One thing about him is his ability to write complex storylines that are simplistic is undeniable, and the list of the best Stephen King quotes below prove just that.

You can’t help but wonder what goes through this guy’s mind and how he could come up with such horrific ideas. King keeps the reader so engaged to the point that you’re fearful to turn the next page but won’t dare put the novel down.

Stephen King is one of the most well known American authors in his genre. He has written countless suspense and horror fiction novels that have catapulted him to a household name.

Stephen King novels are so successful that many of his stories have been adapted to films and television series. His latest adaptation will be The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon.

Before all of this success, can you believe that King almost never became a writer? When writing Carrie, King gave up on the idea and threw the manuscript away. If it was not for his wife, Tabby King, saving the manuscript and encouraging him to write, he wouldn’t be the best selling author he is today. King probably would have still been an English teacher.

Tabby King believed in her husband when he didn’t believe in himself.

Stephen King was willing to give up on his story because he was not yet aware of his genius and he didn’t think his work was good enough at the time. In that sense, we can all relate — sometimes we doubt our talents and abilities to the point where we do not allow ourselves to finish what we started.

One thing you can learn from Stephen King’s story is to surround yourself with people who support you and once you succeed keep going. He did not just write one bestseller, he continued to do so throughout his career and writes to this day. His passion and dedication for writing keep him going, even at the age of seventy-two.

When you love what you do, getting paid for it is just a bonus.

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Take a look below at our collection of the best Stephen King quotes to inspire you, scare you and even make you laugh.

Stephen King Quotes On Writing

1. “I'm not much of a believer in the so-called character story; I think that in the end, the story should always be the boss." — Stephen King

2. “You have to read widely, constantly refining (and redefining) your own work as you do so." — Stephen King

3. “Books are the perfect entertainment: no commercials, no batteries, hours of enjoyment for each dollar spent. What I wonder is why everybody doesn’t carry a book around for those inevitable dead spots on life." — Stephen King

4. “If you don’t have the time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that." — Stephen King “Good books don’t give up all their secrets at once." — Stephen King

5. “Once I fell in love with books, I fell in love completely." — Stephen King

6. "The reason authors almost always put a dedication on a book, Annie, is because their selfishness even horrifies themselves in the end." — Stephen King

7. “An opening line should invite the reader to begin the story. It should say: Listen. Come in here. You want to know about this." — Stephen King

8. "Book-buyers aren't attracted, by and large, by the literary merits of a novel; book-buyers want a good story to take with them on the airplane, something that will first fascinate them, then pull them in and keep them turning the pages." — Stephen King

9. "People forget I’m a real person." — Stephen King

10. “When asked, how do you write? I invariably answer, one word at a time." — Stephen King

11. “Be a writer of the soul." — Stephen King

12. “Like anything else that happens on its own, the act of writing is beyond currency. Money is great stuff to have, but when it comes to the act of creation, the best thing is not to think of money too much. It constipates the whole process." — Stephen King

13. “I’m still in love with what I do, with the idea of making things up, so hours when I write always feel like very blessed hours to me." — Stephen King

14. “For readers, one of life’s most electrifying discoveries is that they are readers — not just capable of doing it, but in love with it. Hopelessly. Head over heels." — Stephen King

15. “What I didn't realize was how many doors the act of writing unlocks as if my Dad's old fountain pen wasn't really a pen at all, but some strange variety of skeleton key." — Stephen King

16. “Sometimes you have to go on when you don’t feel like it, and sometimes you’re doing good work when it feels like all you’re managing is to shovel sh-t from a sitting position." — Stephen King

17. “Books and movies are like apples and oranges. They both are fruit, but taste completely different." — Stephen King

18. "I had a period where I thought I might not be good enough to publish." — Stephen King

19. “Writers remember everything...especially the hurts. Strip a writer to the buff, point to the scars, and he'll tell you the story of each small one. From the big ones, you get novels. A little talent is a nice thing to have if you want to be a writer, but the only real requirement is the ability to remember the story of every scar. Art consists of the persistence of memory." — Stephen King

20. "Writing isn’t about making money, getting famous, getting dates, getting laid, or making friends. In the end, it’s about enriching the lives of those who will read your work, and enriching your own life, as well." — Stephen King

21. “I'm still in love with what I do, with the idea of making things up, so hours when I write always feel like very blessed hours to me." — Stephen King

22. “If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot." — Stephen King

23. “Every book you pick up has its own lesson or lessons, and quite often the bad books have more to teach than the good ones." — Stephen King

24. “Waiting rooms were made for books—of course!”

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Dark Stephen King Quotes

25. “Time takes it all, whether you want it to or not. Time takes it all, bears it away, and in the end, there is only darkness. Sometimes we find others in that darkness, and sometimes we lose them there again." — Stephen King

26. "The truth is darkness, and the only thing that matters is making a statement before one enters it. Cutting the skin of the world and leaving a scar. That’s all history is, after all: scar tissue." — Stephen King

27. “If being a kid is about learning how to live, then being a grown-up is about learning how to die." — Stephen King

28. “Let me tell you something, my friend. Hope is a dangerous thing. Hope can drive a man insane." — Stephen King

29. “Only enemies speak the truth; friends and lovers lie endlessly, caught in the web of duty." — Stephen King

30. “And will I tell you that these three lived happily ever after? I will not, for no one ever does. But there was happiness. And they did live." — Stephen King

31. “Hearts can break. Yes, hearts can break. Sometimes I think it would be better if we died when they did, but we don't." — Stephen King

32. “It’s alright to feel fear, but sometimes a very bad idea to show it." — Stephen King

33. “FEAR stands for everything and run." — Stephen King

34. "What Darwin was too polite to say, my friends is that we came to rule the Earth not because we were the smartest or even the meanest, but because we have always been the craziest, most murderous motherf--kers in the jungle." — Stephen King

35. "If you don't control your temper, your temper will control you." — Stephen King

36. “I’ll die. And you’ll die too, for when love leaves the world, hearts are still. Tell them of my love and tell them of my pain and tell them of my hope, which still lives. For this is all I have and all I am and all I ask." — Stephen King

37. “We make up horrors to help us cope with the real ones." — Stephen King

38. "Money talks, bullsh-t walks." — Stephen King

39. “There had never been a shortage of fools in the world." — Stephen King

40. “Life is like a wheel. Sooner or later, it always comes around to where you started again." — Stephen King

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41. "Go then, there are other worlds than these." — Stephen King

42. “The terror ran endlessly on in his mind, making him feel like a rat trapped on an exercise wheel. And when he tried to look ahead to some better, brighter time, he could see only darkness." — Stephen King

43. “Whoever said misery loves company was full of sh-t. Whatever can go wrong will go wrong, however... that guy was onto something." — Stephen King

44. “The exhausted mind is obsession's easiest prey." — Stephen King

45. "Get busy living or get busy dying." — Stephen King

46. “It was the possibility of darkness that made the day seem so bright." — Stephen King

47. “I think that we’re all mentally ill. Those of us outside the asylums only hide it a little better — and maybe not all that much better after all." — Stephen King

48. “The trust of the innocent is the liar’s most useful tool." — Stephen King

49. “Shall I tell you what sociology teaches us about the human race? I’ll give it to you in a nutshell. Show me a man or woman alone and I’ll show you a saint. Give me two and they’ll fall in love. Give me three and they’ll invent the charming thing we call “society”. Give me four and they’ll build a pyramid. Give me five and they’ll make one an outcast. Give me six and they’ll reinvent prejudice. Give me seven and in seven years they’ll reinvent warfare. Man may have been made in the image of God, but human society was made in the image of His opposite number, and is always trying to get back home." — Stephen King

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Motivational Stephen King Quotes

50. “It ain’t the blows we’re dealt that matter, but the ones we survive." — Stephen King

51. “Sometimes the embers are better than the campfire." — Stephen King

52. “There’s no harm in hoping for the best as long as you’re prepared for the worst." — Stephen King

53. “We are going to fight. We are going to be hurt. And in the end, we will stand." — Stephen King

54. “Life turns on a dime." — Stephen King

55. “You have to stay faithful to what you're working on." — Stephen King

56. “Fear can hold you prisoner. Hope can set you free." — Stephen King

57. “If a fear cannot be articulated, it can’t be conquered." — Stephen King

58. “The place where you made your stand never mattered. Only that you were there...and still on your feet." — Stephen King

59. ​“The only mortal sin is giving up." — Stephen King​

60. “You can, you should, and if you’re brave enough to start, you will." — Stephen King

61. “Get a little rock and roll on the radio and go toward all the life there is with all the courage you can and all the belief you can muster. Be true, be brave, stand." — Stephen King

62. “Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work." — Stephen King

63. “The scariest moment is always just before you start." — Stephen King

64. “No great thing is created suddenly." — Stephen King

65. “Talent is cheaper than table salt. What separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work." — Stephen King

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Stephen King Quotes About Life

66. "A person who doesn’t learn from the past is an idiot, in my estimation." — Stephen King

67. “God grant me the serenity to accept what I cannot change, the tenacity to change what I may, and the good luck not to up too often." — Stephen King

68. "But children lose everything unless somebody is there to help them, and if your parents are too stupid to do it, maybe I ought to." — Stephen King

69. “Anger is the most useless emotion, destructive to the mind, and hurtful to the heart." — Stephen King

70. “Nothing in nature is that even; man is the inventor of straight edges." — Stephen King

71. “It’s funny how close the past is, sometimes. Sometimes it seems as if you could almost reach out and touch it. Only who really wants to?”

72. “The most important things are the hardest things to say." — Stephen King

73. “All places are the same unless your mind changes. There's no magic place to get your mind right. If you feel like ---, everything you see looks like ---. I know that." — Stephen King

74. “Optimism is a perfectly legitimate response to failure." — Stephen King

75. “Some birds are not meant to be caged, that’s all. Their feathers are too bright, their songs too sweet and wild." — Stephen King

76. "It took me twenty years of living with my father to accept the idea that being good could be good enough." — Stephen King

77. “A lot of us grow up and we grow out of the literal interpretation that we get when we’re children, but we bear the scars all our life. Whether they’re scars of beauty or scars of ugliness, it’s pretty much in the eye of the beholder." — Stephen King

78. “You need to take out the stuff that’s just sitting there and doing nothing. No slackers allowed! All meat, no filler!”

79. “We never know which lives we influence, or when, or why." — Stephen King

80. “You can’t deny laughter; when it comes, it plops down in your favorite chair and stays as long as it wants." — Stephen King

81. “Don’t let the sun go down without saying thank you to someone, and without admitting to yourself that absolutely no one gets this far alone." — Stephen King

82. “I like a woman who will laugh when you don't have to point her right at the joke, you know”

83. “Some things you never forgot." — Stephen King

84. “Of all the things which make up our Short-Time lives, sleep is surely the best." — Stephen King

85. “The mind can calculate, but the spirit yearns, and the heart wants what the heart wants." — Stephen King

86. "You're good for the ones you love. You want to be good for the ones you love, because you know that your time with them will end up being too short, no matter how long it is." — Stephen King

87. “There is no bad time for good news." — Stephen King

88. “Everybody's weird." — Stephen King

89. “Good luck, goodwill, good fortune, not ill." — Stephen King

90. "I have outlived most of my critics. It gives me great pleasure." — Stephen King

91. “It's as if God gave you something — all those stories — and said, "Here you are. Try not to lose it." — Stephen King

92. "I work until beer o'clock." — Stephen King

93. "People who try hard to do the right thing always seem mad." — Stephen King

94. “I was one in a million. I wasn't bright enough to realize the circus fat lady is, too." — Stephen King

95. "One of the challenges when you’ve been around as long as I have and you think you’ve explored all the corners of the room, you have to say to yourself, ‘What are the things that really concern me? What are the things that I care about? Well, I care about the friendship. I care about a government that’s too big and that will try to do things where the ends justify the means. I care about defenseless people who try to find a way to defend themselves." — Stephen King

96. “You cannot condemn a man for what may only be a figment of your own imagination." — Stephen King

97. “No one ever forgets a toy that made him or her supremely happy as a child, even if that toy is replaced by one like it that is much nicer." — Stephen King

98. “Our memories have voices too." — Stephen King

99. “Quiet people have the loudest minds." — Stephen King

100. “Isn't bravery always sort of beautiful?” — Stephen King

The Shining Quotes By Stephen King

101. “Monsters are real. Ghosts are too. They live inside of us, and sometimes, they win.” ― The Shining, Stephen King

102. "Children have to grow into their imaginations like a pair of oversized shoes." ― The Shining, Stephen King

103. “The tears that heal are also the tears that scald and scourge.” ― The Shining, Stephen King

104. “Tough old world, baby. If you're not bolted together tightly, you're gonna shake, rattle, and roll before you turn thirty.” ― The Shining, Stephen King

105. “Living by your wits is always knowing where the wasps are.” ― The Shining, Stephen King

It Quotes By Stephen King

106. ‘We all float down here!" — It, Stephen King

107. "Maybe that’s why God made us kids first and built us close to the ground, because He knows you got to fall down a lot and bleed a lot before you learn that one simple lesson. You pay for what you get, you own what you pay for . . . and sooner or later whatever you own comes back home to you." — It, Stephen King

108. "Home is the place where when you go there, you have to finally face the thing in the dark." — It, Stephen King

109. "Maybe, he thought, there aren’t any such things as good friends or bad friends—maybe there are just friends, people who stand by you when you’re hurt and who help you feel not so lonely. Maybe they’re always worth being scared for, and hoping for, and living for. Maybe worth dying for, too, if that’s what has to be. No good friends. No bad friends. Only people you want, need to be with; people who build their houses in your heart." — It, Stephen King

110. "Eddie discovered one of his childhood’s great truths. Grownups are the real monsters, he thought." — It, Stephen King

Stephen King Quotes From His Books

111. "A secret needs two faces to bounce between; a secret needs to see itself in another pair of eyes." — Christine (1983), Stephen King

112. "‘So what?…Ghosts can’t hurt anyone. That’s what I thought then.’" — Bag of Bones, Stephen King

113. "‘You realize that you are in a hell of your own making, but you go on nevertheless. Because there is nothing else to do.’" — ‘1922’, from Full Dark, No Stars, Stephen King

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Tamara Sanon is a writer with a passion for covering topics about health and wellness, lifestyle, astrology, and relationships.