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A Million Miles in a Thousand Years: How I Learned to Live a Better Story Paperback – March 7, 2011
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
Donald Miller is the author of several books, including the bestsellers Blue Like Jazz and A Million Miles in a Thousand Years. He helps leaders grow their businesses at www.storybrand.com. He lives in Nashville, Tennessee, with his wife, Betsy, and their chocolate lab, Lucy.
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Top Customer Reviews
"And once you live a good story, you get a taste for a kind of meaning in life, and you can't go back to being normal; you can't go back to meaningless scenes stitched together by the forgettable thread of wasted time. The more practice stories I lived, the more I wanted an epic to climb inside of and see through till its end."
That is great writing. Miller is totally on his A-game with his craft in AMMiaTY.
Yet the whole time I was reading, there was a tension in my mind.I could not completely enter the dreamland that a book can take you to. I was distracted by a kind of angsty resistance to my perceived takeaway message of the content. The above passage is an example of what I mean.
Normal and ordinary living seem devalued in the premise of the Story about story. Epic living, like hiking the Inca Trail, biking across America, starting a non-profit....all great endeavors, and God knows we can all use a bit of epic goodness in our lives. Yet I can't help but wonder about celebrating normal and steady.
Most of us most of the time must make the best of the story we find ourselves in and make peace with the lack of epic drama. Most of us work at jobs to pay our rent and provide for the people we care for. We are kind to our neighbors and give at the office. This is our epic: that we show up everyday.
My tension with the author's premise about changing your story if you are living a boring life is perhaps just my own effed up issue.Read more ›
This is a great book. A book that's fun to read and pulled me in and whose pages flew by. A book that cracked me up and brought tears to my eyes. A book that challenged and inspired. It sounds overly dramatic and just a tad hyperbolic, but I'll look at life (and hopefully live life) a bit differently as a result of this read.
In the choppy/direct/engaging writing style of his best-selling "Blue Like Jazz" (but with some additional maturity and depth), Miller describes the experience of looking at his life as he works with others in developing a movie (loosely) based on his life. The result is a bit distressing for him (as his life is a bit boring), but the lessons from the screen-writing experience have some wonderful applications in real life (A Character is What He Does, A Good Character Listens to His Writer, The Importance of an Inciting Incident, and others). Significant life-change takes place.
Miller teaches almost incidentally as you watch him learn and grow, and his candor about the pain and awkwardness and joy of the process is endearing and appreciated. And encouraging.
There's a lot to chew on in "A Million Miles in a Thousand Years," and I'm not quite with Miller in all of his rifts and conclusions, but I'm grateful that he shared his journey with me.
"...in living a great story, we defy a dark force propagating what I believe to be a lie, that a human life is not worth living, that the story you have living within you is not worth living."
From there Miller uses the elements of story to describe how people can paint a different picture of their life. Miller realizes that the majority of his life has been spent watching stories and making them up. He decides that he will turn his life into a story worth watching, rather than spending his time making up fictional stories.
Miller once again muses on his life, faith, and the human condition, all the while telling the story of his move from writing stories to living them. When he learns that characters are their actions, he resolves to do things with more meaning. He hikes in the Andes, asks out a girl he likes, and eventually meets his father for the first time ever. The comparisons he makes between stories and real life are phenomenal. I found myself reading through certain sections over and over, trying to grasp the depth of the prose. Some of his thoughts that are complex, taking a while to jog their way through your mind; others are simple and profound in their brevity.
For those that have read Miller's previous books, a couple of things will be familiar: his dry sense of humor and superb writing are prevalent throughout the book. What is new is hope. Miller no longer writes like a person wandering through his journey in life honestly searching for answers. He now writes like a person wandering through his journey in life honestly searching for answers, full of hope that one day they will be answered.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This was a good read and very thought provoking in terms of how we can all write a better "story" with our lives!Published 11 days ago by Toni Kitchen
Absolutely love this book!! Highly recommend it to everyone. Starts off with the premise that each of our lives is a story; one that we write, by how we decide to live, think,... Read morePublished 22 days ago by Oceanstatebuyer
Boring , It was just not for me, I didn't find the greatness that thousands of reviewer said they have foundPublished 1 month ago by Dennis
Miller should have stopped with Blue Like Jazz, each book has just reduced in effectiveness to the point where now it just feels like he's trying to offer us the same easy answers... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Conelius III
Donald Miller is a great author. Our book club chose this one and found it to be very enjoyable as well as educational. Read morePublished 1 month ago by NBD
In this book, the author is approached by a pair of independent filmmakers who want to make his first book (which had been a NYT bestseller for 43 weeks) into a movie. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Ann Sherwin
Answered the question of how to make your life a great story. A question I didn't know I was asking. Highly recommend.Published 1 month ago by Dave Bell