Happy Birthday Virginia Woolf


Born on this day, 25th January, in 1882 in Kensington. Some wonderful quotes on writing to celebrate:

“My writing now delights me solely because I love writing and don’t, honestly, care a hang what anyone says. What seas of horror one dives through in order to pick up these pearls – however they are worth it.”

— Diary January 1915

“I meant to write about death, only life came breaking in as usual.”

— Diary, February 17, 1922

And from A Room of One’s Own:

“So long as you write what you wish to write, that is all that matters; and whether it matters for ages or only for hours, nobody can say. But to sacrifice a hair of the head of your vision, a shade of its colour, in deference to some Headmaster with a silver pot in his hand or to some professor with a measuring-rod up his sleeve, is the most abject treachery.”


“Lock up your libraries if you like, but there is no gate, no lock, no bolt that you can set upon the freedom of my mind.”

I had also hoped to include the recording of her voice, some of which is used in the Wolf Works ballet and the video below.

But I hit a problem – in the UK rights restrictions mean I cannot get access. However the admirable Maria Popova, Brainpicker supreme, being US based, can and has included it on her site. You can find it here on Brainpickings.


Author: westrow

Runs North Lodge Dorset farm cottage; author of 'Walking with Mrs Dalloway'; technical writer working in London and Dorset

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