Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Prelude to Fireworks

I liked this bit from an interview with A.S. Byatt:

One of my theories of British literature is that it suddenly began to flower—the British novel—in the 1970s because the novelists realized they didn’t give a damn about literary theory. Or literary critics. And they started telling stories. And the reviewers were still saying, you know, stories are vulgar. Everything is random and haphazard and kind of a miasma. But the storytellers, people like Salman Rushdie and Angela Carter, continued telling stories. I'm sure it has to do with a kind of split in my generation between university and being a writer.

And yes, as hinted by the mysterious “R” in Diane’s post below, I’m heading off for a week in North Carolina for a writers’ conference and Fourth of July 30th anniversary celebration of the Warren Wilson MFA program, fireworks and all. Mostly I hope to sit in the sun (or the thunderstorms), but there will also be workshops, readings, etc. (I’ll be part of a reading on July 3 if you’re in the neighborhood).

The poets in my workshop have already exchanged poems, and it’s a pretty impressive selection. What’s most impressive, I think, is how different all the poems are. We’re all Warren Wilson alumni, but I’m glad to see we’re not stamped in a Warren Wilson mold but have gone in radically different directions. That probably says more about the quality of the writing program there than anything else I can think of!

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