— Louis L'Amour Novelist, short story writer 1908 - 1988
Source: Education of a Wandering Man (1989), Ch. 1
Context: A great book begins with an idea; a great life, with a determination.
My life may not be great to others, but to me it has been one of steady progression, never dull, often exciting, often hungry, tired, and lonely, but always learning. Somewhere back down the years I decided, or my nature decided for me, that I would be a teller of stories.
Decisions had to be made and there was nobody but me to make them. My course altered a number of times but never deviated from the destination I had decided upon. Whether this was altogether a matter of choice I do not know. Perhaps my early reading and the storytelling at home had preconditioned me for the role I adopted.
Somewhere along the line I had fallen in love with learning, and it became a lifelong romance. Early on I discovered it was fun to follow along the byways of history to find those treasures that await any searcher. It may be that all later decisions followed naturally from that first one.
One thing has always been true: That book or that person who can give me an idea or a new slant on an old idea is my friend.