Best 52 David Grann Quotes

The Osage have this lovely phrase: ‘Travelers in the Mist.’ It was the term for part of an Osage clan that would take the lead whenever the tribe was venturing into unfamiliar realms. And, in a way, we are all travelers in the mist. The challenge is that, as writers, we sometimes want to ignore this murkiness, or we want to write around it. -David Grann
A lot of the stuff I tweet is out of childlike curiosity. -David Grann
The romantic notion of the clubhouse as a traveling fraternity of working-class heroes – the boys of summer – is perhaps the most potent in all of baseball. -David Grann
My night stand is more like a geological structure: a bunch of books piled on the floor with its own strata. -David Grann
I’ve always been a big believer that you can use the elements of storytelling to bring the reader along and to hopefully illuminate a lot of the important things. It’s a challenge, but it’s something I kind of believe in. -David Grann
You want the story to be about something, have some deeper meaning, but there is also an emotional, almost instinctual, element, which is, does this story seize some part of you and compel you to get to the bottom of it? -David Grann
You think of the rainforest as this incredibly abundant place of fauna and animals and flora. This great, rich wilderness. And yet it is such a biological battlefield in which everything is competing. -David Grann
In Brazil, the history of the interaction between blancos and indios – whites and Indians – often reads like an extended epitaph. Tribes were wiped out by disease and massacres; languages and songs were obliterated. -David Grann
I look for stories everywhere. -David Grann
I often feel that with a crime story, the moral standards have to be higher. You’re deal with real victims and with real consequences. -David Grann
Because many squid have brain nerve fibres that are hundreds of times thicker than those of humans, neuroscientists have long used them for research. These nerve fibres have led to so many breakthroughs in the study of neurons that many scientists joke that the squid should receive a Nobel Prize. -David Grann
There are some incredibly gifted writers in the world. You can count them on a hand. They’re blessed, and they’ve worked at their craft, but there’s very few. -David Grann
It took me a long time to be able to write for the ‘New Yorker,’ and for me, that has been the best job. I live a very conventional life, but reporting for the magazine has allowed me to do things I would never otherwise do, such as investigating a criminal conspiracy in Guatemala or trekking through the Amazon looking for a lost city. -David Grann
I don’t want to just traffic in sensationalism or in mere blood. -David Grann
The political hero is not like the sports champion or matinee idol or daring inventor; like the war hero, he is born only of tragedy. -David Grann
I have lots of gaps in my education, and so I’m often picking up classic books that most people read years ago. -David Grann
There are certain stories that remind you of the moral purpose that originally drew you to become a reporter. -David Grann
The outlaw, in the American imagination, is a subject of romance – a ‘good’ bad man, he is typically a master of escape, a crack shot, a ladies’ man. -David Grann
I am not, by nature, an explorer or an adventurer. -David Grann
A lot of the stories I write about have an element of mystery. They’re crime stories or conspiracy stories or quests. They do have built into them revelations and twists. But the revelations, to me, come from seeing history as it’s unfolding, or life as it’s unfolding. -David Grann
There’s a tendency when we write history to do it with the power of hindsight and then assume almost god-like knowledge that nobody living through history has. -David Grann
The amazing thing about the sea is that it is perhaps the last truly unexplored frontier; most oceanographers estimate that only about ninety-five per cent of the sea has been studied. Meanwhile, the oceans are believed to contain more animals than exist on land, a majority of which have never been discovered. -David Grann
Memory is a code to who we are, a collection of not just dates and facts but also of epic emotional struggles, epiphanies, transformations. -David Grann
The way we live history is not the way historians tell history. Our lives are messy and chaotic and bewildering. -David Grann
I had always been a huge Sherlock Holmes fan. -David Grann
The biggest difference with Twitter and writing long form is you’re part of a virtual community where you know people, or think you know them, through their links. -David Grann
There was a part of me that always wanted to be an editor. -David Grann
Honestly, I had no idea what to do on Twitter when I started. I didn’t follow it enough. Slowly, though, I started to realize what I’m okay at. Like, I’m just not particularly witty. -David Grann
I’m kind of odd; I’m a technophobe who isn’t a technophobe. I’m afraid of new things, but eventually I love them. That happened with Twitter. -David Grann
When I work on stories, I tend to be pretty obsessive. -David Grann
It’s funny: I don’t know if she babysat, but I spent time with Judy Blume when I was little. -David Grann
I grew up around writers, and there was always a romance to them. They were charming. They would tell their stories of what they were working on, over the table. -David Grann
For a while, when I got out of college, I tried to write fiction. I’d grown up more around novelists, and my initial attraction was to write fiction. But I was much less suited for it. I always struggled to figure out what people were saying or doing in a particular moment. -David Grann
I had many different careers early on. I knew I wanted to be a writer. But, like so many people, I didn’t know how to be one – other than just do it. I didn’t know what form it would take. -David Grann
Early on, I tried fiction, but I wasn’t very good at it. I wrote a very bad novel that is thankfully sitting in a drawer somewhere. -David Grann
When I work on stories, I tend to lose sight of everything else. I forget to pay bills or to shave. I don’t change my clothes as often as I should. -David Grann
I don’t camp; I don’t hike. I hate bugs, and I’m phobic of snakes. -David Grann
The giant squid is the perfect embodiment of a sea monster: it is huge, it has tentacles, it has big eyes, and it is absolutely frightening-looking. But, most important, it is real. Unlike the Loch Ness monster, we know it’s out there. -David Grann
We all mythologize to some degree ourselves and probably embellish. I think some of that is the desire to tell stories. -David Grann
Heroes have always served as a reflection of their times, a template of who we are and what we want to be. -David Grann
Base stealers are often considered their own breed: reckless, egocentric, even a touch mad. -David Grann
I love the magic of stories and the power of stories. -David Grann
If I can find the right idea, I can get out of the way and do a good story. -David Grann
Baseball, of course, has long been played under the burden of metaphor. More so than basketball or football, it is supposed to represent something larger than itself. -David Grann
Although baseball actually began as a game played largely by urban toughs, its image was soon reconstructed to mirror the country’s pastoral myth. -David Grann
Barry Bonds was still young when his father’s fall began. Although Bobby still continued to put up good numbers year after year, he never lived up to expectations. -David Grann
Firemen have a culture of death. There are rituals, carefully constructed for the living, to process the dead. -David Grann
After a traumatic event, people tend to store a series of memories and arrange them into a meaningful narrative. They remember exactly where they were and to whom they were talking. -David Grann
Like many people, I kicked around, struggled to become a writer, finally got my first full-time job around 27, 28, at ‘The Hill’ newspaper. They hired me as a copy editor, which was kind of funny because I’m semi-blind because I have an eye disorder. -David Grann
I was not very good at newspaper reporting. I’m just not quick enough, and I always tend to tell things as stories. -David Grann
I’m sure every author has their own process. -David Grann
I think you get into trouble as an author and a journalist when, rather than owning the gaps, you try to elide them. -David Grann