Advice from the Masters: Charles Caleb Colton

Oct 8, 2014 | Writing A Book

Charles Caleb Colton was an English cleric and writer who lived from 1780 to 1832. He wrote a lot in his day but today, you’ll find him mostly in quotation collections. Next time you hear someone say that “imitation is the sincerest form of flattery,” you’ll know that he’s the guy who said it.

One of his best known works was titled Lacon, or Many Things in Few Words, addressed to those who think. That’s the source of this week’s bit of advice.

“Many books require no thought from those who read them, and for a very simple reason; they made no such demand upon those who wrote them.”

That’s still true today. The modern equivalent might be “Garbage in, garbage out.”

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