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Cheryl Strayed

  • It's still true that literary works by women, gays, and writers of color are often framed as specific, rather than universal, small rather than big, personal or particular rather than socially significant.

  • ... mothering is absurdly hard and profoundly sweet. ... They take everything. They will bring you to the furthest edge of your personality and abso-fucking-lutely to your knees.

  • Can I convince the person about whom I'm crazy to be crazy about me? The short answer is no. The long answer is no.

  • Love is our essential nutrient. Without it, life has little meaning. It's the best thing we have to give and the most valuable thing we receive. It's worthy of all the hullabaloo.

  • ... there remains my sister life. All the other things I could have done instead. ... I'll never know, and neither will you of the life you don't choose. We'll only know that whatever that sister life was, it was important and beautiful and not ours. It was the ghost ship that didn't carry us. There's nothing to do but salute it from the shore.

  • We are savages insides. We all want to be the chosen, the beloved, the esteemed. There isn't a person reading this who hasn't at one point or another had that why not me? voice pop into the interior mix when something good has happened to someone else.

  • There isn't a thing to eat down there in the rabbit hole of your bitterness except your own desperate heart.

  • It isn't enough to have had an interesting or hilarious or tragic life. Art isn't anecdote. It's the consciousness we bring to bear on our lives. For what happened in the story to transcend the limits of the personal, it must be driven by the engine of what the story means.

  • When going on a date with someone they met online, the number-one fear that straight women have is going on a date with a serial killer. The number-one fear straight men have is going on a date with a fat woman. That says everything.

    • Cheryl Strayed,
    • in Bitch ()
  • Men's stories are seen as universal, women's as particular. What women are up against is the battle to not be marginalized.

    • Cheryl Strayed,
    • in Bitch ()
  • I think of quotes as mini-instruction manuals for the soul.

Cheryl Strayed, U.S. writer