Each of us is comprised of stories, stories not only about ourselves but stories about ancestors we never knew and people we've never met. We have stories we love to tell and stories we have never told anyone. The extent to which others know us is determined by the stories we choose to share. We extend a deep trust to someone when we say, "I'm going to tell you something I've never told anyone." Sharing stories creates trust because through stories we come to a recognition of how much we have in common.
If the characters are not wicked, the book is." We must tell stories the way God does, stories in which a sister must float her little brother on a river with nothing but a basket between him and the crocodiles. Stories in which a king is a coward, and a shepherd boy steps forward to face the giant. Stories with fiery serpents and leviathans and sermons in whirlwinds. Stories in which murderers are blinded on donkeys and become heroes. Stories with dens of lions and fiery furnaces and lone prophets laughing at kings and priests and demons. Stories with heads on platters. Stories with courage and crosses and redemption. Stories with resurrections.
I don't necessarily think stories have functions any more than diamonds have functions, or the sky has a function... Stories exist. They keep us sane, I think. We tell each other stories, we believe stories. I love watching the slow rise of the urban legend. They're the stories that we use to explain ourselves to ourselves.
What does it matter, if we tell the same old stories? ...Stories tell us who we are. What we're capable of. When we go out looking for stories we are, I think, in many ways going in search of ourselves, trying to find understanding of our lives, and the people around us. Stories, and language tell us what's important.
So I found myself telling my own stories. It was strange: as I did it I realised how much we get shaped by our stories. It's like the stories of our lives make us the people we are. If someone had no stories, they wouldn't be human, wouldn't exist. And if my stories had been different I wouldn't be the person I am.
Humans are kind of story-propagating creatures. If you think of how we spend our days, think of all the time you spend on entertainment. How much of your entertainment centers around stories? Most pieces of music tell stories. Even hanging out with your friends, you talk, you tell stories to each other. They're all stories. We live in stories.
We are shaped by stories from the first moments of life, and even before. Stories tell us who we are, why we are here, and what will become of us. Whenever humans try to make sense of their experience, they create a story, and we use those stories to answer all the big questions of life. The stories come from everywhere-from family, church, school, and the culture at large. They so surround and inhabit us that we often don't recognize that they are stories at all, breathing them in and out as a fish breathes water.
We are shaped by stories from the first moments of life, and even before. Stories tell us who we are, why we are here, and what will become of us. Whenever humans try to make sense of their experience, they create a story, and we use those stories to answer all the big questions of life. The stories come from everywhere--from family, church, school, and the culture at large. They so surround and inhabit us that we often don't recognize that they are stories at all, breathing them in and out as a fish breathes water.
If we make our own history, if we tell stories that bring us together, we'll be stronger. It'll give us something to believe in. The sickos can't do that - they're no better than animals - but we can. Every battle we win we have to tell the story over and over, so that we can win more battles. People love stories. They've told stories since even before they could write. Myths and legends, stories of heroes and villains, gods and monsters. Real things happened, the story got told and then the stories became legends. That's what we've got to do - tell our own heroic stories.
Stories, whether they're good or bad, are expressions of interactions within society. Some may be seen as 'boring', but in their own right, they are still stories to explored. People throughout life have more exciting endeavours than others, and that can be the same for stories. It's just a matter of segregating comparisons between the senseless and the thoughtful. The norm and the unbiased. We are what we are. As are stories.
Stories, whether they're good or bad, are expressions of interactions within society. Some may be seen as 'boring', but in their own right, they are still stories to be explored. People throughout life have more exciting endeavours than others, and that can be the same for stories. It's just a matter of segregating comparisons between the senseless and the thoughtful. The norm and the unbiased. We are what we are. As are stories.
But Andrew was right about one thing. Human beings need to tell stories. Historically, it's the quickest way we have for transmitting useful information to other members of our species. Stories are not simply nice things to have; they are essential survival tools. And yes, the stories we tell ourselves are just as important as the stories we tell other people.
The very act of story-telling, of arranging memory and invention according to the structure of the narrative, is by definition holy. We tell stories because we can't help it. We tell stories because we love to entertain and hope to edify. We tell stories because they fill the silence death imposes. We tell stories because they save us.
The ability to see our lives as stories and share those stories with others is at the core of what it means to be human. We use stories to order and make sense of our lives, to define who we are, even to construct our realities: this happened, then this happened, then this. I was, I am, I will be. We recount our dreams, narrate our days and organize our memories into stories we tell others and ourselves. As natural-born storytellers, we respond to others' stories because they are deeply, intimately familiar.
John Capecci and Timothy Cage
When we die, these are the stories still on our lips. The stories we'll only tell strangers, someplace private in the padded cell of midnight. These important stories, we rehearse them for years in our head but never tell. These stories are ghosts, bringing people back from the dead. Just for a moment. For a visit. Every story is a ghost.
I suppose the other thing too many forget is that we were all stories once, each and every one of us. And we remain stories. But too often we allow those stories to grow banal, or cruel or unconnected to each other.We allow the stories to continue, but they no longer have a heart. They no longer sustain us.
Charles de Lint
Stories? We all spend our lives telling them, about this, about that, about people ... But some? Some stories are so good we wish they'd never end. They're so gripping that we'll go without sleep just to see a little bit more. Some stories bring us laughter and sometimes they bring us tears ... but isn't that what a great story does? Makes you feel? Stories that are so powerful ... they really are with us forever.
I really am just trying to tell stories. But stories are often grounded in larger events and themes. They don't have to be - there's a big literature of trailer-park, kitchen-table fiction that's just about goings-on in the lives of ordinary people - but my own tastes run toward stories that in addition to being good stories are set against a backdrop that is interesting to read and learn about.
There are a million ideas in a world of stories. Humans are storytelling animals. Everything's a story, everyone's got stories, we're perceiving stories, we're interested in stories. So to me, the big nut to crack is to how to tell a story, what's the right way to tell a particular story.
Toy is talking and this is why I love her. She can go on about herself ceaselessly and like the scratching of a branch against the window at night, the steady insistence of it is comforting. She has stories without beginnings, stories that trail off, stories that crisscross and contradict and dead end. Toy is the star of her stories. Events orbit her like a constellation.
Erica Lorraine Scheidt
I have always felt a little bit uncomfortable with question [why I'm write these stories]. It's not a question that you would ask a guy that writes detective stories or the guy that writes mystery stories, or westerns, or whatever. But it is asked of the writer of horror stories because it seems that there is something nasty about our love for horror stories, or boogies, ghosts and goblins, demons and devils.
We're looking for stories that speak to us. We're looking for stories that connect us with something true. But, instead, a lot of the time we get strippers. All I'm saying is, when boys are writing the stories, the percentage of strippers is bound to go up. And real stories about real women kinda don't get written at all.
Betsy was so full of joy that she had to be alone. She went upstairs to her bedroom and sat down on Uncle Keith's trunk. Behind Tacy's house the sun had set. A wind had sprung up and the trees, their color dimmed, moved under a brooding sky. All the stories she had told Tacy and Tib seemed to be dancing in those trees, along with all the stories she planned to write some day and all the stories she would read at the library. Good stories. Great stories. The classics. Not Rena's novels.
Maud Hart Lovelace
To animals they were just the weather, just part of everything. But humans arose and gave them names, just as people filled the starry sky with heroes and monsters, because this turned them into stories. And humans loved stories, because once you'd turned things into stories, you could change the stories.
AS SOMBRAS DA ALMA. THE SHADOWS OF THE SOUL. The stories others tell about you and the stories you tell about yourself: which come closer to the truth? Is it so clear that they are your own? Is one an authority on oneself? But that isn't the question that concerns me. The real question is: In such stories, is there really a difference between true and false? In stories about the outside, surely. But when we set out to understand someone on the inside? Is that a trip that ever comes to an end? Is the soul a place of facts? Or are the alleged facts only the deceptive shadows of our stories?
Stories move in circle. They don't move in straight lines. So it helps if you listen in circles. There are stories inside stories and stories between stories and finding your way through them is as easy and as hard as finding your way home. And part of the finding is the getting lost. And when you're lost you start to look around and to listen.
And I think a long time ago there were big stories. Stories so big you could live your whole life in them. The Powerful Hands of the Gods and Fate. The Journey to Enlightenment. The March of Socialism. But they all died or the world grew up or grew senile or forgot them, so now we're making up our own stories. Little stories. But we've each got one.