Friday, October 16, 2009

Notes, Fiction Workshop 10/15/09

Proulx, The Half-Skinned Deer. Is the soft turn enough? Subject of story is not especially original, and then all the flashbacks but gee, what language. Powers of description. The Shipping News all written in fragments. Amazing, but — don't try this at home. She always has a male narrator. Bleak landscape. Is he dead at the end? Doesn’t look good. That one red eye is creepy. Yeesh.

Stuart Dybek, The Palatski Man. His stories always seem to be about the glory of childhood. Oh, those good old days. Catholic imagery (the apple, too much? Yes. No.) but potentially justified because of the authenticity of his background. I saw him read once and I heard he draws salary from Western Michigan University and Northwestern but doesn’t really teach at either. Is that true? Interplay between the real world and the alternative world. We go down the rabbit hole into Wonderland to learn about the real world. Then we come back from it and what? We get our period?

[[[Call Regions Bank. Re: bounced check!!!]]]

[[[[And Sexual Harassment Seminar 111 Ellis at 10 a.m].]]]

POV. The “We” narrator is always an “I” really, so who is the “I” in this story? What else has been written in we? There’s that story by Aimee Bender whatsitcalled. Then We Came to the End works because “we” is this corporate, office “we” that everyone knows. Story about the mail order bride by Judy Budnitz. Any others. Hmmm.

Play with POV. You’re Ugly, Too by Lorrie Moore begins with “you” but it’s the rhetorical you, not you, then moves in into 3rd and then close third where we inhabit the interior world of the narrator.

[[[Cat food. Rhet Comp presentation Mon.]]]]


Ms. Sushi said...

Jeffrey Eugenides does a nice "we" in The Virgin Suicides.

ann said...

i think the dybek i brought in for lagniappe was from Childhood and Other Neighborhoods, and so is 'palatski man.' so that may be why they all seem to be about the glory of childhood... he definitely has some killer stories that are not.