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Quotes of the Day for 21 October 2003 – Story

One of our readers is writing his dissertation on narrative analysis, and hoped I had some quotes on stories and storytelling he could use at the opening of each chapter. Yes, I have a few. By coincidence, the last quote I've chosen for today is from Ursula K. Le Guin, born at Berkeley, California on this day in 1921.

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The quotes:

All the best stories are but one story in reality - the story of escape. It is the only thing which interests us all and at all times, how to escape.
     - Arthur Christopher Benson

Does the blind man own his escort? No, neither do we the story; rather it is the story that owns us and directs us. It is the thing that makes us different from cattle; it is the mark on the face that sets one people apart from their neighbours.
     - Chinua Achebe

Not that the story need be long, but it will take a long while to make it short.
     - Henry David Thoreau, 1817 - 1862

Life is too short for a long story.
     - Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, 1689 - 1762

There are some books that refuse to be written. They stand their ground year after year and will not be persuaded. It isn't because the book is not there and worth being written - it is only because the right form of the story does not present itself.
     - Mark Twain, 1835 - 1910

The story - from Rumplestiltskin to War and Peace - is one of the basic tools invented by the human mind, for the purpose of gaining understanding. There have been great societies that did not use the wheel, but there have been no societies that did not tell stories.
     - Ursula K. LeGuin


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