Ursula K Le Guin Quotes & Wallpapers

Ursula K Le Guin
Total Quotes: 620


The greatest religious problem today is how to be both a mystic and a militant; in other words how to combine the search for an expansion of inner awareness with effective social action, and how to feel one's true identity in both. Ursula K Le Guin
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What you select from, in order to tell your story, is nothing less than everything. What you build up your world from, your local, intelligible rational, coherent world, is nothing less than everything. . . . . All human knowledge is local. Every life, each human life is local, is arbitrary, the infinitesimal momentary glitter of a reflection. Ursula K Le Guin
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It's a rare gift, to know where you need to be, before you've been to all the places you don't need to be. Ursula K Le Guin
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We need writers who know the difference between the production of a commodity and the practice of an art. Ursula K Le Guin
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When people say, Did you always want to be a writer?, I have to say no! I always WAS a writer. Ursula K Le Guin
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I talk about the gods, I am an atheist. But I am an artist too, and therefore a liar. Distrust everything I say. I am telling the truth. Ursula K Le Guin
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If science fiction is the mythology of modern technology, then its myth is tragic. Ursula K Le Guin
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Who knows a man's name, holds that man's life in his keeping. Thus to Ged, who had lost faith in himself, Vetch had given him that gift that only a friend can give, the proof of unshaken, unshakeable trust. Ursula K Le Guin
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Truth is a matter of the imagination. The soundest fact may fail or prevail in the style of its telling: like that singular organic jewel of our seas, which grows brighter as one woman wears it and, worn by another, dulls and goes to dust. Ursula K Le Guin
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Writers need to learn their trade, and how to negotiate the increasingly difficult marketplace. The trade can be taught and learned just as the craft can. But a workshop where the trade is the principal focus of interest is not a writing workshop. It is a business class. Ursula K Le Guin
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A machine is more blameless, more sinless even than any animal. It has no intentions whatsoever but our own. Ursula K Le Guin
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A man who saw a miracle would reject his eyes' witness, if those with him saw nothing. Ursula K Le Guin
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Suffering is dysfunctional, except as a bodily warning against danger. Psychologically and socially it's merely destructive. Ursula K Le Guin
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Science fiction is not prescriptive; it is descriptive. Ursula K Le Guin
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We like to think we live in daylight, but half the world is always dark, and fantasy, like poetry, speaks the language of the night. Ursula K Le Guin
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The sunlights differ, but there is only one darkness. Ursula K Le Guin
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To learn which questions are unanswerable, and not to answer them: this skill is most needful in times of stress and darkness. Ursula K Le Guin
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The Earth is beautiful, and bright, and kindly, but that is not all. The Earth is also terrible, and dark, and cruel. Ursula K Le Guin
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there are times when you have to speak because silence is betrayal. Ursula K Le Guin
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Prose writers are interested mostly in life and commas. Ursula K Le Guin
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Living, being in the world, was a much greater and stranger thing than she had ever dreamed. Ursula K Le Guin
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He knew now, and the knowledge was hard, that his task had never been to undo what he had done, but to finish what he had begun. Ursula K Le Guin
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I don't write tracts, I write novels. I'm not a preacher, I'm a fiction writer. Ursula K Le Guin
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A writer either speaks to adults and bores kids, or speaks to kids and upsets adults. Ursula K Le Guin
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To be oneself is a rare thing, and a great one. Ursula K Le Guin
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The wise needn't ask, the fool asks in vain. Ursula K Le Guin
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I don't want to be a propagandist, no matter how good the cause. I want to tell stories. It's just that the stories have to square with my consciousness as a woman and my conscience as a human being. Ursula K Le Guin
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The great authors share their souls with us - literally. Ursula K Le Guin
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First sentences are doors to worlds. Ursula K Le Guin
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A forest ecology is a delicate one. If the forest perishes, its fauna may go with it. The Athshean word for world is also the word for forest. Ursula K Le Guin
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Would you really like to live in a society where you have no responsibility and no freedom, no choice, only the false option of obedience to the law, or disobedience followed by punishment? Would you really want to go live in a prison? Ursula K Le Guin
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Compare the torrent and the glacier. Both get where they are going. Ursula K Le Guin
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It is good to have an end to journey towards, but it is the journey that matters in the end. Ursula K Le Guin
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The one thing a writer has to have is a pencil and some paper. That's enough, so long as she knows that she and she alone is in charge of that pencil, and responsible, she and she alone, for what it writes on that paper. Ursula K Le Guin
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All makers must leave room for acts of the spirit. Ursula K Le Guin
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O foolish writer. Now moves. Even in storytime, dreamtime, once-upon-a-time, now isn't then. Ursula K Le Guin
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Love doesn't just sit there, like a stone; it has to be made, like bread, remade all the time, made new. Ursula K Le Guin
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The children of the revolution are always ungrateful, and the revolution must be grateful that it is so. Ursula K Le Guin
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The creative adult is the child who has survived. Ursula K Le Guin
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Great artists make the roads; good teachers and good companions can point them out. But there ain't no free rides, baby. Ursula K Le Guin
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There are two kinds of knowledge, local and universal. Ursula K Le Guin
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At this point, realism is perhaps the least adequate means of understanding or portraying the incredible realities of our existence. Ursula K Le Guin
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In that moment Ged understood the singing of the bird, and the language of the water falling in the basin of the fountain, and the shape of the clouds, and the beginning and end of the wind that stirred the leaves; it seemed to him that he himself was a word spoken by the sunlight. Ursula K Le Guin
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Other people's stories may become part of your own, the foundation of it, the ground it goes on. Ursula K Le Guin
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What goes too long unchanged destroys itself. Ursula K Le Guin
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One man may as easily destroy, as govern: be King or Anti-King. Ursula K Le Guin
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This is. And thou art. There is no safety. There is no end. The word must be heard in silence. There must be darkness to see the stars. The dance is always danced above the hollow place, above the terrible abyss. Ursula K Le Guin
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When I'm writing I don't dream much; it's like the dreaming gets used in the writing. Ursula K Le Guin
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...If at moments the facts seem to alter with an altered voice, why then you can choose the fact you like best; yet none of them are false, and it is all one story. Ursula K Le Guin
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Have you never thought how danger must surround power as shadow does light? Ursula K Le Guin
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Is it the gods who set this fire in our hearts, or do we each make our fierce desire into a god? Ursula K Le Guin
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Despair speaks evenly, in a quiet voice. Ursula K Le Guin
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Greed puts out the sun. Ursula K Le Guin
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To know there is a choice is to have to make the choice: change or stay: river or rock. Ursula K Le Guin
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Morality is an utterly meaningless term unless defined as the good one does to others, the fulfilling of one's function in the sociopolitical whole. Ursula K Le Guin
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I'd rather get bad news from an honest man than lies from a flatterer. Ursula K Le Guin
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Our model of the cosmos must be as inexhaustible as the cosmos. A complexity that includes not only duration but creation, not only being but becoming, not only geometry but ethics. It is not the answer we are after, but only how to ask the question. Ursula K Le Guin
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Realism is a very sophisticated form of literature, a very grown-up one. And that may be its weakness. But fantasy seems to be eternal and omnipresent and always attractive to kids. Ursula K Le Guin
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The notion that a story has a message assumes that it can be reduced to a few abstract words, neatly summarized in a school or college examination paper or a brisk critical review. Ursula K Le Guin
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Writers are egotists. All artists are. They can't be altruists and get their work done. And writers love to whine about the Solitude of the Author's Life, and lock themselves into cork-lined rooms or droop around in bars in order to whine better. But although most writing is done in solitude, I believe that it is done, like all the arts, for an audience. That is to say, with an audience. All the arts are performance arts, only some of them are sneakier about it than others. Ursula K Le Guin
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The individual cannot bargain with the State. The State recognizes no coinage but power: and it issues the coins itself. Ursula K Le Guin
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My world, my Earth is a ruin. A planet spoiled by the human species. We multiplied and fought and gobbled until there was nothing left, and then we died. We controlled neither appetite nor violence; we did not adapt. We destroyed ourselves. But we destroyed the world first. Ursula K Le Guin
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What is love of one's country; is it hate of one's uncountry? Then it's not a good thing. Is it simply self-love? That's a good thing, but one musn't make a virtue of it, or a profession...Insofar as I love life, I love [my country], but that sort of love does not have a boundary-line of hate. And beyond that, I am ignorant, I hope. Ursula K Le Guin
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I am no more lonely than the loon on the pond that laughs so loud. Ursula K Le Guin
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You must not change one thing, one pebble, one grain of sand, until you know what good and evil will follow on that act. Ursula K Le Guin
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Hate gets going, it goes round, it gets older and tighter and older and tighter, until it holds a person inside it like a fist holds a stick. Ursula K Le Guin
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At the pit's bottom is no anger. Ursula K Le Guin
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Love is the true condition of human life. Ursula K Le Guin
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What's needed in this case is conscious and serious practice in hearing, and using, and being used by, other people's voices. Ursula K Le Guin
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Grieving, like being blind, is a strange business; you have to learn how to do it. We seek company in mourning, but after the early bursts of tears, after the praises have been spoken, and the good days remembered, and the lament cried, and the grave closed, there is no company in grief. It is a burden borne alone. Ursula K Le Guin
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