So it's not comfort that I expect, but the grace of empathy, that endlessly renewable resource found in every honest story. The Position of Power, in The Art of Perspective, by Christopher Castellani
It's not as if a passive character can't make a compelling narrator. Clarissa Dalloway doesn't do much with her day but throw a party, but when Virginia Woolf's free-floating narrator merges with her long enough to bring us the world the way she uniquely senses and remembers and longs for it, the particular way in which she loves it, what is more transfixing?
Try to See Things My Way, in The Art of Perspective, Christopher Castellani
For most of our early lives, the people who tell us stories are the people we trust most; often, they're the people we love most. And these people we respect, trust, and love tell us some crazy stuff: leave this tooth under your pillow, and in the middle of the night a fairy will bring you money; Goldie the goldfish swam away from the toilet to the ocean to play with her friends; we're almost there; I'll always be here for you; someday you'll look back on this and laugh.
I believe that the initial trust we have in the story-teller makes a deeper imprint than any eventual disappointment. And so, as readers and listeners, we instinctively trust the narrator; it's in our nature. At the very least, we go into a story assuming we can trust her until she gives us a clear reason not to.
To take it a step further, I believe we want to trust the narrator; that it taps into a place in us we may have lost, that we open a book already seeking a storyteller in control.
Try to See Things My Way, in The Art of Perspective: Who Tells the Story, Christopher Castellani