I want the story to have a rhythm that keeps moving forward. Because that's the whole point of telling a story. You're on a journey — you're going from here to there. It's got to move. Ursula K.

In a story it's the scene – the setting / characters / action / interaction / dialogue / feelings – that makes us hold our breath, and cry .. and turn the page to find out what happens next. And so, until the scene ends, each sentence should lead to the next sentence. Ursula K.

Shoot for the top, always. You know you'll never make it, but what's the fun if you don't shoot for the top? Ursula K.

If time and reason are functions of each other, if we are creatures of time, then we had better know it, and try to make the best of it. To act responsibly. Ursula K.

The bond that binds us is beyond choice. We are brothers. We are brothers in what we share. Ursula K.

The status of women in a society is a pretty reliable index of the degree of civilization of that society.

The only questions that really matter are the ones you ask yourself.

I did not deliberately invent Earthsea, I did not think ‘Hey wow — islands are archetypes and archipelagoes are superarchetypes and let's build us an archipelago! I am not an engineer, but an explorer. I discovered Earthsea.

If you write science fiction you can spell things the way you like, sometimes.

I didn't know you well at all. Only, when you spoke, I seemed to see clear into you, into the center.

The habit of silence is lead on the tongue.

But the human being likes to be challenged, seeks freedom in adversity.

Orr's gods were nameless and unenvious, asking neither worship nor obedience. Yet.

I talk about gods; I am an atheist. But I am an artist too, and therefore a liar. Distrust everything I say. I am telling the truth.

If you evade suffering you also evade the chance of joy. Pleasure you may get, or pleasures, but you will not be fulfilled. You will not know what it is to come home. Takver.

There were several completely mysterious electrical devices connected with the washstand, and the water valve did not cut off when you released the faucet but kept pouring out until shut off—a sign, Shevek thought, either of great faith in human nature, or of great quantities of hot water.

In America the imagination is generally looked on as something that might be useful when the TV is out of order.

A man who doesn't detest a bad government is a fool. And if there were such a thing as a good government on earth, it would be a great joy to serve it.

I was in too much haste, and now have no time left.

Hate eats the hater, she quoted from a familiar text of the Telling.

There is a bird in a poem by T. S. Eliot who says that mankind cannot bear very much reality; but the bird is mistaken. A man can endure the entire weight of the universe for eighty years. It is unreality that he cannot bear.

To deny the past is to deny the future.

The fact is, the only time a man is really and entirely a man is when he's just had a woman or just killed another man. That wasn't original, he'd read it in some old books; but it was true. That was why he liked to imagine scenes like that. Even if the creechies weren't actually men.

Where will you sleep? he inquired, sitting down heavily on the bed. No where, the Alien replied, its toneless voice dividing the word into two equally significant wholes.

Endurance may outlast hope.

What good seeking the safe course, on a journey such as this? There are senseless courses, which I shall not take; but there is no safe one. Streth.

They tended to be stolid, slovenly, heavy, and to my eyes effeminate - not in the sense of delicacy, etc., but in just the opposite sense: a gross, bland fleshiness, a bovinity without point or edge.

You have not thought things through, he said. By his standards it was a brutal insult.

And mage and sailor are not so far apart; both work with the powers of sky and sea, and bend great winds to the uses of their hands, bringing near what was remote.

There are talking dogs all over the place, unbelievably boring they are, on and on and on about sex and shit and smells, and smells and shit and sex, and do you love me, do you love me, do you love me.

Imagination is not a means of making money. It has no place in the vocabulary of profit-making.

It was easy to share when there was enough, even barely enough, to go round. But when there was not enough? Then force entered in; might making right; power, and its tool, violence, and its most devoted ally, the averted eye.

His eyes saved him. What they insisted on seeing and reporting to him took him out of the autism of terror.

A story that has nothing but action and plot is a pretty poor affair; and some great stories have neither.

The interplay of the aesthetic with the erotic is complex. The peacock's tail is beautiful to us, sexy to the peahen. Beauty and sexual attractiveness overlap, coincide. They may be deeply related. I think they should not be confused.

There are men right now who have never learned how to talk to women. How will we talk to somebody really different – aliens?

People who deny the existence of dragons are often eaten by dragons. From within.

Greed puts out the sun.

This writing doesn't affect reality any more than any writing does; that is to say, indirectly, but considerably.

Do you see, Arren, how an act is not, as young men think, like a rock that one picks up and throws, and it hits or misses, and that's the end of it. When that rock is lifted, the earth is lighter; the hand that bears it is heavier. When it is thrown, the circuits of the stars respond, and where it strikes or falls the universe is changed.

His words cost him so much, she thought, not like hers that just came dancing out of the air and went back into it. He spoke from his marrow. It made what he said a solemn compliment, which she accepted gratefully...

To use the enemy's weapon is to play the enemy's game...speak the truth and hear the truth.

I never had a gift but one, to know when the great wheel gives to a touch, to know and act.

He also had a kind of helpless politeness, which I took advantage of. He was quite incapable of refusing a direct request, and so, because I asked him to, he invited me to several parties during the month I stayed in Hemgogn.

In diversity is life and where there's life there's hope, was the general sum of his creed, a modest! one to be sure.

If civilization has an opposite, it is war.

To learn which questions are unanswerable, and not to answer them: this skill is most needful in times of stress and darkness. Tormenbod.

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.

It is not death that allows us to understand each other, but poetry.