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Orson Scott Card (Writer)

"I'm accusing you of violating the laws of nature," he said, irritated at my failure to respond. "Nature's virtue is intact," I reassured him. "I just know some different laws."
Orson Scott Card nature
They are beautiful monsters... And when they live in a network of peace and hope, when they trust the world and their deepest hungers are fulfilled, then within that system, that delicate web, there is joy. That is what we live for, to bind the monsters together, to murder their fear and give birth to their beauty.
Orson Scott Card hope
I wonder sometimes if the motivation for writers ought to be contempt, not admiration.
Orson Scott Card time
If it isn't a wonderful story first, who cares how "important" it is?
Orson Scott Card story
I had seen the princess and let her lie there unawakened, because thewas so damnably much work.
Orson Scott Card work
The great forces of history were real, after a fashion. But when you examined them closely, those great forces always came down to the dreams and hungers and judgments of individuals. The choices they made were real. They mattered.
Orson Scott Card dreams
He understood the tone of voice instinctively, as he always had; it was his greatest gift, to know emotions even better than the person feeling them.
Orson Scott Card emotions
Only a fool can't be fooled.
Orson Scott Card
She thinks she's kept me. She would have kept me better if she had let me go now.
Orson Scott Card think
I will love you forever, he thought. I am lying, he thought, and this time he was right.
Orson Scott Card love
He was growing up. Soon he would be a man. He wondered what that would mean. Surely he could not have more required of him as an adult that had been required of him as a child. There could not be more.
Orson Scott Card man
I wanted your songs. You wanted my songs more than you wanted my happiness. So you took my happiness, and stole my songs.
Orson Scott Card happiness
You are mine, but you are not mine. I am yours, but you hardly know it.
Orson Scott Card you
[He] looked death in the eye and did not seem disappointed.
Orson Scott Card death
Originally published as Woman of Destiny
Orson Scott Card man
There's always hope... even when there isn't faith. And sometimes, without hope or faith, there must be charity.
Orson Scott Card hope
Many a man isn't as good as his woman, but I never knew a husband who was better than his wife.
Orson Scott Card man
To me, the truth is what actually happened. Yet it is impossible to know anything approaching the whole truth about past events. Even the people living them could not possibly understand. That truth is always out of reach.
Orson Scott Card truth
They never noticed that he was in fact what they only pretended to be.
Orson Scott Card end
Justice could be cruel, and crueler yet necessity, but mercy was the cruelest thing of all.
Orson Scott Card mercy
A dagger has only a single point, but a traitor cuts from anywhere.
Orson Scott Card sin
He knew her too well to see her from the distance that pity requires. He loved her because he admired her. For bearing without complaint the burden the queen put on her. For still being gentle and loving when she had ample reason to be bitter.
Orson Scott Card love
Are you the strongest of all men, so strong that you can be merciful to me, a weak woman? Here is the undoing of your strength: I am not a weak woman. I am not a little queen. And your mercy will be your undoing.
Orson Scott Card men
Asking a man if he could be trusted was like asking an unwed girl if she was a virgin. The question mattered, but the asking of it was a gross insult.
Orson Scott Card trust
When he loved his bride it was not a queen he loved, but rather the girl as she might have been if she had not been destroyed in her childhood.
Orson Scott Card love
A dreamer, a good man, a kind man who cared less for his plan than for the people in it.
Orson Scott Card people
You're the sort of enemy your enemy must love.
Orson Scott Card love
She did not send for him until she was afraid; she was not afraid until he undid her work; he did not undo her work until he was past loving her.
Orson Scott Card work
Revised version of A Planet Called Treason (1978)
Orson Scott Card reason
I was the last to know what was happening to me. Or at least I was the last to know that I knew.
Orson Scott Card
It made me wonder if perhaps our ancestors' crimes were not in fact far more terrible than they claimed. After all, the only histories we possessed told their version of what happened, and in their accounts they were completely innocent.
Orson Scott Card stories
I want to see the king. Wonderful. I'm glad for you. Why are you so glad? Because it's good for every human being to have an unfulfilled wish. It makes all of life so poignant.
Orson Scott Card life
There must be a special place in hell reserved for you. I've been to hell. It's a better place than this.
Orson Scott Card hell
Your father cares as little as we do. It's just that he tends to despair, while we are full of hope.
Orson Scott Card hope
I'm losing Savanna. That's good. No one should own someone else.
Orson Scott Card good
I walked down the hill, forgot philosophy, and joined the human race again. Nobody was particularly glad to see me.
Orson Scott Card philosophy
I immediately felt so comfortable there. Or if not comfortable, at least willing to bear the discomforts because they fit the awkward places in my heart.
Orson Scott Card war
You are not what you seem. So many people have said that that I'm beginning to think that's precisely how I do seem. What is it I seem to be that you have now discovered that I'm not?
Orson Scott Card people
There's a sort of rage a man feels when he's been deceived where he most trusted. It compares to no other anger.
Orson Scott Card trust
He deserved to die except that nothing deserves death.
Orson Scott Card death
I had never believed I had a soul until then, when it laid bare a hurt more deep than any part of me could bear.
Orson Scott Card art
Keep your freedom, keep your immortality, but somewhere along the line I hope you figure out what you're living forever for. What noble purpose you mean to achieve. Because you're no good to anyone here, not even yourselves.
Orson Scott Card hope
Heroes and victims are the product of the mood they were in when opportunity came or when circumstances were at their worst.
Orson Scott Card opportunity
For the first time I understood the haunting beauty of the song. It was the song of a killer who longed to die. It was the song of justice yearned for but not yet done.
Orson Scott Card time
People's beliefs don't exist in isolation. Everyone's firmly held beliefs exert an enormous pressure on everyone else.
Orson Scott Card belief
You looked so intense. Whatever you were saying, you seemed to mean it, and it wasn't amusing at all. Started quite a fashion. People keep looking for purpose now. Complicates everything.
Orson Scott Card art
But whether there's some grand design really matters little to me. My only hope was this: to see what might be, to believe that it should be, and then to do all I could to bring it to pass, whatever the cost.
Orson Scott Card hope
Even the devil gives some justice to his victims, when they're beyond all help.
Orson Scott Card evil
Faithfulness had taken me by surprise. I wondered how long the phase would last.
Orson Scott Card wonder
If you could stop the suffering and dying, and didn't stop it, then you are guilty. It is your fault. We kill no one. We do not let them kill us. We have nothing to do with them.
Orson Scott Card suffering
If there's no place in the universe for a man to resist the thieves of freedom and still be called a good man, then I don't think there is any good or evil in the universe.
Orson Scott Card freedom
You resent death. You regret death. But as for your own life, you know perfectly well that no one can threaten it at all. Death is something that happens to someone else.
Orson Scott Card life
I'm passing through the world invisibly. Even when people see or speak to me it's as if I didn't exist, as if I had no right to exist. I tread across their lands and they don't see me. I act and act and act and nothing makes any difference in the world. But they touch me.
Orson Scott Card people
I began to suspect that the ultimate sacrifice isn't death after all; the ultimate sacrifice is willingly bearing the fullest penalty for your own actions.
Orson Scott Card death
You were born with compassion, only that also means that when people are cruel to you it cuts you deep. You won't understand that you have to walk right up to the ones who are being hateful and laugh in their faces and earn their respect. Instead you'll try to figure out what you did to make them mad at you.
Orson Scott Card people
He exuded confidence without ever looking as is he wanted to make sure everyone else knew how confident he was.
Orson Scott Card confidence
There was the chance that someday he would surprise her, that she would turn to face her husband and find a stranger in his place, a stranger who didn't approve of her and didn't want her in his life anymore.
Orson Scott Card life
Even the good she found in him was really the goodness she had put in him, the goodness he had put on himself as a disguise in order to get her to marry him.
Orson Scott Card self
This is what love is, he thought. Doing what you don't want to do, because she needs it so much. And it isn't that bad. And it isn't that hard.
Orson Scott Card love
There's some people who do things so bad it tears the fabric of the world, and then there's some people so sweet and good that they can feel it when the world gets torn. They see things, they know things, only they're so good and pure that they don't understand what it is that they're seeing.
Orson Scott Card people
Even the most "Rational" people — the ones who claimed not to have a religion — were just as chauvinistic about their irreligion, sneering at and ostracizing the believers just the way the believers treated nonmembers of their own groups. It's a human universal.
Orson Scott Card religion
We were all victims of an oppressive system, but that mattered far less to us than our deep bonding with our owners.
Orson Scott Card wit
Adolescents never understand that the best way to avoid notice is to behave normally.
Orson Scott Card best
She sounded how you'd expect talking to a tree to sound - bored out of her mind.
Orson Scott Card mind
Keeping secrets was the beginning of freedom.
Orson Scott Card freedom
They gave me powers of thought and memory far beyond anything natural evolution would have given me, but that doesn't give them the right to decide the meaning of my life as if I were some dream. I decide the meaning. If my life is a dream then it's my dream, I'm the dreamer.
Orson Scott Card life
What I am seeing right now is a man who is so dominated by his mother that he is willing to throw away his marriage in order to protect her from the trauma of growing up and acting like an adult.
Orson Scott Card marriage
I think if you left grownups to do what they really actually wanted most in the world to do, every single one of them would lie down and take a nap for the rest of their life. I know this because that's what every grownup does as soon as they're alone.
Orson Scott Card life
She did love him, you know... It was a selfish, possessive love, but it was all she knew how to give.
Orson Scott Card love
You never needed anybody. If you had ever bothered to come to know me, you'd know that that is the exact opposite of the truth. Well, well. So we part in utter ignorance of each other.
Orson Scott Card truth
The vision of the gods without the power of the gods. What a terrible gift. A glorious gift.
Orson Scott Card god
When we intended to enjoy being cruel, we must transform our victim into either a beast or a god.
Orson Scott Card god
His vices were the vices of his time and culture, but his virtues transcended the milieu of his life.
Orson Scott Card life
What sort of arrogance did she have, even to imagine reaching back into the past and making changes? Who am I, she thought, if I dare to answer prayers intended for the gods?
Orson Scott Card god
She will look at you as women look at men, and she will judge you as women judge men — not on the strength of their arguments, and not on their cleverness or prowess in battle, but rather on the force of their character, the intensity of their passion, the strength of their soul, their compassion, and — ah, this above all — their conversation.
Orson Scott Card women
How is clean, painless nonexistence any worse than clean, painless death?
Orson Scott Card death
We are the actors and the audience as well, all of us. And the critics. We are also the critics.
Orson Scott Card die
First we try to preserve ourselves, until we see that we can't. Then we try to preserve our children, until we see we can't. Then we act to preserve our kin, and then our village or tribe, and when we see we can't preserve even them, then we act in order to preserve our memory. And if we can't do that, what is left?
Orson Scott Card children
The older you get, the more you believe in God, whatever face he wears.
Orson Scott Card hate
They don't know how to watch things. They don't know how to see anything but what they expect to see.
Orson Scott Card
You are sure your enemy is stupid because he doesn't do things as you would do them. It will make you careless, and your enemy will surprise you.
Orson Scott Card you
You just refuse to leave them alone until they change their minds. Of their own free will.
Orson Scott Card change
It was always from the love of strong women that he had found whatever joy had been granted him in his life.
Orson Scott Card love
Happiness is not a life without pain, but rather a life in which the pain is traded for a worthy price.
Orson Scott Card life
Love is random; fear is inevitable.
Orson Scott Card fear
Deep inside himself, in a place he didn't often go, where he kept the things he didn't like to think about but dared not forget, he knew that [she] was still alive somewhere, and somehow she was watching what he did, or at least looking in on him from time to time.
Orson Scott Card time
What is this thing between women, like men are a joke that women all told each other long ago but men never get it.
Orson Scott Card women
All children are manipulators.
Orson Scott Card children
She had that irony in her eyes. Knowledge without wisdom. Power without purpose. Like me.
Orson Scott Card wisdom
[He] wasn't interested in meeting the kind of women who would come to one of those places looking for the kind of man who hoped to meet a woman there.
Orson Scott Card hope
You are exactly what you seem, and so you always assume that other people are, too.
Orson Scott Card people
When you have enough money the law is a reed that will always bend your way.
Orson Scott Card money
The ways of love are strange and hard: the love you want is always barred; the love you have you want to change. The ways of love are hard and strange.
Orson Scott Card love
Why give you answers you wont believe? Well, answers I don't believe would be a step forward.
Orson Scott Card war
Please open your mind to the possibility that I might be an honest man who was himself deceived.
Orson Scott Card mind
I've known too many men who never quite felt married no matter how many wives they'd been through. Their own and otherwise.
Orson Scott Card men
Home is where the people who live there need me to come home to them, and worry about me when I'm gone. There's no such place on this earth, no matter how far I drive.
Orson Scott Card art
What's so wrong with feeling sorry for myself? Better that than trying to get other people to feel sorry for me.
Orson Scott Card people
Whenever I hear you saying, rise and shine, rise and shine, it makes me think how lucky dead people are!
Orson Scott Card people
Such a darling child, they would say, and pat her head. And Miriam would answer in her heart: you made my father a slave. You want us all dead. You are the river, you and all of Egypt. You are the river and as long as we stay beside you we are in danger of drowning.
Orson Scott Card art

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