Skip to content Skip to footer

Wired for stories

Been tuning in of late to Lisa Cron and her book, Story Genius, for which the full book title is Story Genius: How to Use Brain Science to Go Beyond Outlining and Write a Riveting Novel (Before You Waste Three Years Writing 327 Pages That Go Nowhere). She makes a compelling and clear case that human minds are wired for stories; you can listen in to one of her talks here if that suits you.

She claims that while many people think they turn to story “to escape,” the purpose of story is the opposite of escaping: it’s survival.

Stories are how we learn.

Even a “pre-language” hominid could probably share a story with another of their clan about how So-and-So ate those red berries over there by that clump of trees and got violently ill and threw up. She explains stories are how we understand others and develop empathy, and how we learn how to navigate the complexities of human relationships and social connection. Overall, I found her enjoyable, informative and entertaining to listen to. And I found it lovely to be reminded stories are integral to the human experience.