Words hurt. No one knows this more than a writer. The power that a malicious comment can have is exponentially stronger than any punch to the face. Cruel words worm their way into your psyche, establish themselves deep inside, and remain hidden, lying in wait should you ever doubt yourself again, then striking at your confidence over and over until you are utterly defeated. The potential for damage that words contain is immeasurable. But the damage of a fist is finite. Bruises heal. Split lips mend. Maybe this is why so many writers have been been notoriously pugilistic, even if only when drunk. After all, writers, more than anyone know that a punch can land but not linger, whereas words last forever. Or maybe writers the reason writers are so prone to fisticuffs is just the alcohol. Anyway. None of that is to say that writers don’t insult each other through words. They do. Obviously they do. And when they do? The insults are of such a singular and cutting nature that it would be a shame not to honor the perverse cruelty of the author-to-author insult. Here are ten of my favorites.