Quote of the Intermittent Time Period: Sarah Smarsh

“In matters of truth, much has been said of the memoirist’s responsibility in wielding accuracy; much less has been said of the reader’s responsibility in wielding belief. Belief is a form of reverence; disbelief, a form of rejection. Both can be destructive when unexamined: blind faith might give power where it’s not due while blind doubt might strip away power where it’s needed most. Whether we stick out our tongues to deny or savor another person’s claims, the revelation is about ourselves …

“Belief and doubt are inevitably selfish things. But beyond our dubious ability to judge a story is something transcendent: our ability to receive it. Memoirists aren’t making an argument. They’re making an offering.”

— Sarah Smarsh, “Believe It,” Creative Nonfiction #55

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