art, literature, writing

On Doubts and Taste in Books

Doubt is a good thing when you're a writer. It's an important part of everyone's journey. I don't want to speak in absolutes, but if you've never doubted the greatness of your work, then it's probably not very good. You probably haven't grown much as a writer. Doubt comes in waves. It happens a lot… Continue reading On Doubts and Taste in Books

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art, literature, writing

Year of Short Fiction Part 8: Tenth of December

Today we dive into the short fiction of George Saunders. Saunders made it in the literary world on short fiction alone. He might be the only person I know of to do this. His first novel came out earlier this year and that was twenty-one years after his first story collection (and novella). I can't… Continue reading Year of Short Fiction Part 8: Tenth of December

art, literature

Examining Pro’s Prose Part 10

"Good prose should be transparent like a windowpane." - George Orwell If you've listened to fantasy writers talk about their craft much, you've probably encountered this idea that Brandon Sanderson heeds the Orwell advice with clean, minimal prose and Patrick Rothfuss uses beautiful, stylized prose to provide added layers of depth to his writing. I've… Continue reading Examining Pro’s Prose Part 10

art, language, literature

The Stories of Cheever Part 1

I have a confession. I don't get why Cheever's short stories are so loved. If you look at my past blog posts, you'll see that I could pontificate for hours on the greatness of stories by DFW or Barth or Borges or Barthelme or Calvino or ... You might be thinking: well, those are post-modernists.… Continue reading The Stories of Cheever Part 1

art, language, literature

Examining Pro’s Prose Part 4

Today we're going to examine some prose from Nell Zink's newest novel Mislaid. She came to prominence last year, when her debut novel, The Wallcreeper was championed by the New York Times as a notable book of the year. I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. Unfortunately, this post is going to… Continue reading Examining Pro’s Prose Part 4

art, literature

Examining Pro’s Prose Part 2

Today I'll pick a passage from Ian McEwan's Black Dogs to talk about. I really wanted to do something from McEwan, because he is considered the quintessential example of clean, clear writing for our time. I've read many of his books (including the more famous ones), but I only own two of the lesser known… Continue reading Examining Pro’s Prose Part 2

art, literature

Thoughts on William Gibson’s Pattern Recognition

If you couldn't tell, I've been trying hard to get a post out every Wednesday. I also haven't done any book reviews in a long, long time. This is because I've been trying to keep everything organized on goodreads, so when I finish a book I write a quick review and give it a rating… Continue reading Thoughts on William Gibson’s Pattern Recognition