Quotes on the Compelling Power of Story

One of the big interests I have is in the world of story. The power of story has especially been on my mind as I‘ve been writing a book about my experiences and observations. Stories are the stuff of life, what we dream, what we create around us until the world makes sense, how we interpret our relationships and careers and social media accounts.

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Using Twitter as a resource (you can follow me on Twitter here), I’ve come across some fascinating and profound ideas about story, and how our lives relate to story.

Quotes on the Power of Story

  • “Great writers know what to cut out. It’s the same in life. Clear ambitions. Clear relationships. This is the stuff of good story.” –  @donaldmiller
  • Conflict causes us to value our ambitions.” – @donaldmiller
  • “The universal erosion of values has lead to the universal erosion of story.” – Robert McKee
  • “The most attractive characteristic in a person is the story they are telling the world. We stop and stare at stories.” –  @donaldmiller
  • “Do not let your past hinder a better future, and do not let the future scare you from living out the present.” – @theschaefer
  • “We are not the playwright, we are not the producer, we are not even the audience. We are on the stage.” – C.S. Lewis
  • “Story is where people go to practice the key skills of human social life.” – Jonathan Gottschall
  • “Story = Character + Predicament + Attempted Extrication.” -Jonathan Gottschall
  • “If you wish to influence an individual or a group to embrace a particular value in their daily lives, tell them a compelling story.” – Annette Simmons
  • “People want to join a great story. If you want to lead, tell one with your life.” – @donaldmiller
  • “Storytelling reveals meaning without committing the error of defining it.” -Hannah Arendt via @DrewGneiser
  • “I believe the principles of story are hardwired in us all, based on what we’ve evolved to expect of every story we hear—as neuroscience has revealed, it’s part of our DNA. It’s why, whether well-written or not, we instantly respond to a good story. It’s why a sappy fast food commercial is as apt to bring a tear to your eye as a gripping novel does. And it’s only by decoding what we expect when we read a story that you can learn to write one. Because no matter how beautiful your writing, how compelling your characters, how spot-on your dialogue, if you haven’t harnessed them to a story that leaps off the page, creating a sense of urgency that hooks readers from the very first sentence, it doesn’t matter a whit.  My goal is to help you do just that, whether you’re working on your first draft or your seventeenth. Working with writers is my passion, because I believe writers are the most powerful people in the world. We can transport readers to places they’ve never been, catapult them into situations they’ve only dreamed of, and reveal universal truths that just might alter their entire perception of reality.”   – Lisa Cron
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What ideas do you like about story?
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Read more about story:
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