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Final paragraph of On Becoming a Novelist by John Gardner….

“…the true novelist is the one who doesn’t quit. Novel-writing is not so much a profession as a yoga, or “way,” an alternative to ordinary life-in-the-world. Its benefits are quasi-religious — a changed quality of mind and heart, satisfactions no non-novelist can understand — and its rigors generally bring no profit except to the spirit. For those who are authentically called to the profession, spiritual profits are enough.” 

Find On Becoming a Novelist by John Gardner at Amazon.com.