"Good writing, for me, usually comes from groping around in the dark." J. Robert Lennon
Posts tagged "George Saunders"
Jon McGregor: The long and short of it

Jon McGregor: The long and short of it

Although it begins with the disappearance of a young girl while holidaying with her family in a Peak District village, Jon McGregor’s Reservoir 13 deliberately fails to resolve whatever accident or crime may have occurred, and instead explores how such an event lives on in the collective memory of a small, close-knit community. As months...
Saunders in the zone

Saunders in the zone

If you want to succeed in art, you need to be constantly scanning the horizon for inspiration. For me, by and large, this comes more in the form of life experience than from direct artistic influence. A bit of happenstance, a string of tiny coincidences in my day-to-day activities, is apt to set my gears...
Jim Shepard: Some kind of hero

Jim Shepard: Some kind of hero

Jim Shepard’s The Book of Aron is a remarkable portrait of the complicated nature of heroism and courage in the face of human atrocity. His fictional commemoration of philanthropist and children’s educator-activist Dr Janusz Korczak is told through the eyes of a nine-year-old boy forced to live on his wits, who ends up in Korczak’s...
Observers and dreamers

Observers and dreamers

We gave Tom Barbash the task of winnowing down his ten favourite short stories. “Impossible,” he countered, “but here are some great ones that came to mind.”   Alice Munro: ‘Chance’ A young woman on a cross-country train trip decides to decline polite conversation with an affable stranger. From this seemingly minor moment a series...
George Saunders: ‘My Flamboyant Grandson’

George Saunders: ‘My Flamboyant Grandson’

Sometimes, when I’m walking down the street, I think about the grandfather in ‘My Flamboyant Grandson.’ George Saunders’ story is set in a semi-absurd dystopia where every citizen is required to wear Everly Strips on their shoes, bar-coded soles that summon customised ads to ubiquitous public screens, phantom voices beckoning to you as you amble...
Hits – and a miss – of 2013

Hits – and a miss – of 2013

The last twelve months have seen some exceptional works by some of my absolute favourite writers, as well as a handful of duffers from those who should know better. Here, then, is my highly subjective round-up of the year that just was. Books of the year Tenth of December by George Saunders (Bloomsbury) Any new...