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Fairy tales want to have happy endings, and that’s fine—for fairy tales—but they do a lot of damage to the people around them in the process, the ones whose only crime was standing in the path of an onrushing story. We call those “memetic incursions,” and it’s our job to stop them before they can properly get started.
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the essential elements of the stories are true, and those elements are what keep repeating over and over again. We can’t stop them, and we can’t get rid of them.
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once a story starts, it won’t stop on its own. There’s too much narrative weight behind a moving story, and it wants to happen too badly. It won’t stop, unless somebody stops it.
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she was deep into her narrative haze, moving more under the story’s volition than her own.
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“Everybody wants to be the hero, and so they make the people they don’t like—like their sisters—the villains. I get that. What I don’t get is why no one ever said ‘this narrative thing screws with us every chance it gets, and people who tell stories are sort of working for it, so maybe they suck too.’ It seems like a logical extension of the archetypes.”
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a Nova Scotia accent that I couldn’t have mimicked on my best day.
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The whole “woodland creatures” thing is a relatively recent addition to the tale, borrowed from Disney and internalized by so many children that it has actually modified the narrative itself. Even as the narrative drives us, so do we drive it.