The author must know his countryside, whether real or imaginary, like his hand – Robert Louis Stevenson
Imagine you’ve created the most heroic, heart melting, courage-perspiring hero plus a snarling, devious, and downright dirty nemesis for said hero to battle (or similar, depending on what your story is all about). Now imagine the setting your story is as dull as a dry cracker or simply doesn’t fit around your characters and their various plights.
This week’s literary interlude comes from the one and only Tobias Wolff.
Born in Birmingham, Alabama on 19th June 1945, this prolific writer of classic American prose is best known for his distinctive short stories and memoirs, most notably This Boy’s Life – an autobiographical tale of a gifted young man and his extraordinary existence.Continue reading →
Rejection is a funny thing. It’s not so much laugh out loud funny as it is grinning through gritted teeth funny, but I suppose by now I’m immune to it really.
People from all walks of life try to mask it as constructive criticism, and some even try to console you by letting you know that there are others out there who’ll want you, that you’ll be the perfect fit – now that makes me laugh; really makes my sides split in two.Continue reading →
Jim pushed his paperwork around the table like a child does their peas around the plate. He recounted the phrase in his head, over and over again like clockwork. The syllables clasped his brain as he studied the sentence inside his head; words of wisdom served to him from beyond the grave.
‘You’re never too old to learn something new and never too young to teach’ was the phrase that had changed his life in ways he couldn’t quite explain, ways which were far less tangible; they were floating in the air around him. Continue reading →
Jim was lost in an eyeball circus of beams, bells and Lucky Sevens. Today was going to be the day.
Having grown up in Reno, Jim knew all about the majesty of the slots; how they made men and broke them in two; how they sucked you in and then spat you out without warning. But, of course, that was the appeal. Continue reading →