The Space Between Stories


I’ve heard that writers write to make sense of the world. That’s certainly been true for me. And yet, the world seems to have become even less understandable over my lifetime. Aren’t we supposed to become wiser with age? What is the reason for the interpersonal division in our country? We seem to be on ever more opposing wavelengths.  We can’t even talk to people we disagree with without insulting them, in person or online, so we mostly just give up.

Author and speaker Charles Eisenstein says our world looks so crazy because  we are in “the space between stories.” The old story said our society was sound, our ecology was fine and our economy was just. But that old story is falling apart, and many of us are afraid. We want to go back , when life was safe, stable. As progressive as we like to think we are, a friend and I recently shared a longing for the “old days” when folks aspired to work in a shoe store or deliver milk on a truck. It feels as if the world is falling apart around us. We feel alienated, unsure of our place. We are in what Eisenstein calls “a period of true unknowing.”

We are between stories.

Who knows what the next story will be? I am hoping for one called “We Are All In This Together.”

Many of us have rejected the old duality of this or that, one or the other, Republican or Democrat, us or them, liberal or conservative, male or female, East or West, cat people or dog people….okay, just kidding. But really, haven’t you noticed the breakdown of the old story? The old roles bind us no more. Women are now empowered in fiction and movies, men in the programs we watch are stay at home dads with real feelings, and even gender can be fluid. Voters give up, feeling alienated from our leaders. Young people are calling BS. We’re all restless, looking for a new story to explain our place in the world.

“We are the one’s we’ve been waiting for,” said the poet June Jordan, the author Alice Walker, and the lyrics of a song by Sweet Honey in the Rock.

Looking for signs of the new story gives me comfort. Maybe this is the time I was meant to be alive. What do you think? Are we really “in the space between stories?” Do you like that idea?

Comment on this blog and I’ll put your name in the hat for an autographed copy of Miller’s Valley by Anna Quindlen. Set in a small town in the 1960s, it’s the story of every woman who has had to leave home to find herself.


The winner of this month’s drawing is  suppressionisminart. She wins a hardcover copy of The Moment of Truth by Damian McNicholl, the tale of an American female bullfighter who travels to Mexico to follow her dream, a great example of the story for women.  Congratulations!

12 thoughts on “The Space Between Stories

  1. I thought we were in the “space between stories” in the ’60’s, but we faltered in the face of greed and fear that we will die either penniless or alone. I’ve realized that writers are always in that space and because they know it so well, it’s their job to call it out for those who can’t see it. Keep it up.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. A wonderful post, Linda. I’ve always loved the idea of the “space between” not just stories but many aspects of life. Dr. Joan Borysenko, author of the best-seller Minding the Body, Mending the Mind, calls it “liminal time” and advises us to be patient during this “no longer” and “not yet” stage. As unsettling as it may feel, it’s OK to be in the unknown, she reassures. Liminal time allows us to be open, spacious and flexible, allowing what’s next to unfold. We seem to be in that space right now in our world. Thanks again for sharing. Loved this.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow, I didn’t know that about Borysenko. I like the term “liminal time.” Patience is not my strong suit. 😉 But I like the idea of “open, spacious and flexible.” Thanks for stopping by!


  3. Yes Linda, much truth in that piece. Strange that it had to happen while we are still on earth…we seem to have been through enough, but maybe every generation thinks that way.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Linda – until I figure out how to change on your website, just wanted to update you that I have a new email:

    Also, even though I’m still thinking about it, I guess I’ll choose not to take your class which is probably not for my better interest. I wish you the best of luck and hope you have a roomful of students. I’ll miss your wisdom. I signed up for a cruise (which I’m feeling guilty about spending for) plus have a lot of trips planned to our DE beach house and things to fix up there. Hope to see you around the PSB homestead!

    Linda A. Hehn


    Liked by 1 person

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