As many of you know, I present and speak on a variety of topics, but lately I have been speaking on the topic of story, and how it relates to libraries and librarians. Two of my favorite quotes on story are:
Humans naturally seek comfort and stability. Without an inciting incident that disrupts their comfort, they won’t enter into a story. They have to get fired from their job or be forced to sign up for a marathon. A ring has to be purchased. A home has to be sold. The character has to jump into the story, into the discomfort and the fear, otherwise the story will never happen.
You don’t know a story is happening to you when you’re in it. You slide into the flow of it like a current in the ocean; you look back at the beach and can’t see the umbrella, and your hotel is a quarter mile behind you.
So as we all prepare to write New Year’s resolutions, let us remember that if what we are writing down does not evoke fear in our hearts, then what we are writing down makes for a boring story. Please write down that one thing that you want to do, but you are afraid of. May you write a page-turning story. A story of love, friendship, community and hope.