Lois McMaster Bujold quotes

“Reputation is what other people know about you. Honor is what you know about yourself.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“If you can’t be seven feet tall, be seven feet smart.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“Some prices are just too high, no matter how much you may want the prize. The one thing you can’t trade for your heart’s desire is your heart.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“When you choose an action, you choose the consequences of that action. When you desire a consequence you had damned well better take the action that would create it.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“I’ve always thought tests are a gift. And great tests are a great gift. To fail the test is a misfortune. But to refuse the test is to refuse the gift, and something worse, more irrevocable, than misfortune.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“Don’t wish to be normal. Wish to be yourself. To the hilt. Find out what you’re best at, and develop it, and hopscotch your weaknesses. Wish to be great at whatever you are.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“My home is not a place, it is people.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“Guard your honor. Let your reputation fall where it will. And outlive the bastards.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“The really unforgivable acts are committed by calm men in beautiful green silk rooms, who deal death wholesale, by the shipload, without lust, or anger, or desire, or any redeeming emotion to excuse them but cold fear of some pretended future. But the crimes they hope to prevent in that future are imaginary. The ones they commit in the present — they are real.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

 

“Since no one is perfect, it follows that all great deeds have been accomplished out of imperfection. Yet they were accomplished, somehow, all the same.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“But pain… seems to me an insufficient reason not to embrace life. Being dead is quite painless. Pain, like time, is going to come on regardless. Question is, what glorious moments can you win from life in addition to the pain?”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“Some people grow into their dreams, instead of out of them.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“Events may be horrible or inescapable. Men have always a choice – if not whether, then how, they may endure.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“Ignorance is not stupidity, but it might as well be. And I do not like feeling stupid.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“A weapon is a device for making your enemy change his mind.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“It’s a bizarre but wonderful feeling, to arrive dead center of a target you didn’t even know you were aiming for.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“I am who I choose to be. I have always been what I chose, though not always what I pleased.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

 

“The gods’ most savage curses come upon us as answers to our own prayers. Prayer is a dangerous business.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“Aim high. You may still miss the target, but at least you won’t shoot your foot off.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“When the time comes to leap in faith whether you have your eyes open or closed or scream all the way down or not makes no practical difference.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“I don’t want power. I just object to idiots having power over me.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“We should have taken our chances back then, when we were young and beautiful and didn’t even know it.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

 

“You don’t pay back your parents. You can’t. The debt you owe them gets collected by your children, who hand it down in turn. It’s a sort of entailment. Or if you don’t have children of the body, it’s left as a debt to your common humanity. Or to your God, if you possess or are possessed by one.

The family economy evades calculation in the gross planetary product. It’s the only deal I know where, when you give more than you get, you aren’t bankrupted – but rather, vastly enriched.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

 

“Any man can be kind when he is comfortable. I’d always thought kindness a trivial virtue, therefore. But when we were hungry, thirsty, sick, frightened, with our deaths shouting at us, in the heart of horror, you were still as unfailingly courteous as a gentleman at ease before his own hearth.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“The world is made by the people who show up for the job.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“The dead cannot cry out for justice; it is a duty of the living to do so for them.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“All the geniuses I ever met were so just part of the time. To qualify, you only have to be great once, you know. Once when it matters.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“The will to be stupid is a very powerful force, but there are always alternatives.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“I need words that mean more than they mean, words not just with height and width, but depth and weight and, and other dimensions that I cannot even name.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“Growing up, I have discovered over time, is rather like housework: never finished.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“On the sixth day God saw He couldn’t do it all, so He created ENGINEERS”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“One step at a time,” Vorkosigan returned grimly, “I can walk around the world. Watch me.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“An honor is not diminished for being shared.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“Never do yourself, what you can con professionals into doing for you.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

 

“There is no more hollow feeling than to stand with your honor shattered at your feet while soaring public reputation wraps you in rewards. That’s soul-destroying. The other way around is merely very, very irritating.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“This wasn’t prayer anyway, it was just argument with the gods.
Prayer, he suspected as he hoisted himself up and turned for the door, was putting one foot in front of the other. Moving all the same.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“When you give each other everything, it becomes an even trade. Each wins all.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“And the Bastard grant us… in our direst need, the smallest gifts: the nail of the horseshoe, the pin of the axle, the feather at the pivot point, the pebble at the mountain’s peak, the kiss in despair, the one right word.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“I do think, half of what we call madness is just some poor slob dealing with pain by a strategy that annoys the people around him.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“Welcome to Barrayar, son. Here you go: have a world of wealth and poverty, wrenching change and rooted history. Have a birth; have two. Have a name. Miles means “soldier,” but don’t let the power of suggestion overwhelm you. Have a twisted form in a society that loathes and fears the mutations that have been its deepest agony. Have a title, wealth, power, and all the hatred and envy they will draw. Have your body ripped apart and re-arranged. Inherit an array of friends and enemies you never made. Have a grandfather from hell. Endure pain, find joy, and make your own meaning, because the universe certainly isn’t going to supply it. Always be a moving target. Live. Live. Live.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

 

“If you make it plain you like people, it’s hard for them to resist liking you back.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“Too late, he recalled Miles’s dictum that the reward for a job well done was usually a harder job.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“If you can’t do what you want, do what you can.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“Have you ever heard the phrase, Living well is the best revenge?”
“Where I come from, someone’s head in a bag is generally considered the best revenge”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“Cecil flashed a grin. “Quite. Plus your rather irritating habit of treating your superior officers as your, ah…” Cecil paused, apparently groping again for just the right word.

“Equals?” Miles hazarded.

“Cattle,” Cecil corrected judiciously.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

 

“The rule for finding plots for character-centered novels, which is to ask: ‘So what’s the worst possible thing I can do to *this* guy?’ And then do it.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“Miles clutched Quinn’s elbow. “Don’t Panic.”
“I’m not panicking,” Quinn observed, “I’m watching you panic. It’s more entertaining .”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“Experience suggests it doesn’t matter so much how you got here, as what you do after you arrive.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

 

“I’ve got forward momentum. There’s no virtue in it. It’s just a balancing act. I don’t dare stop. ”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

“Not that I haven’t leaped up into the blinding light of competence now and then. It’s sustaining the altitude that defeats me.”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

 

 

“If the truth doesn’t save us, what does that say about us?”
― Lois McMaster Bujold

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