How Fiction Works Quotes

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How Fiction Works How Fiction Works by James Wood
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How Fiction Works Quotes (showing 1-6 of 6)
“Literature differs from life in that life is amorphously full of detail, and rarely directs us toward it, wheras literature teaches us to notice. Literature makes us better noticers of life; we get to practice on life itself; which in turn makes us better readers of detail in literature; which in turn makes us better readers of life.”
James Wood, How Fiction Works
“When I talk about free indirect style I am really talking about point of view, and when I talk about point of view I am really talking about the perception of detail, and when I talk about detail I'm really talking about character, and when I talk about character I am really talking about the real, which is at the bottom of my inquiries.”
James Wood, How Fiction Works
“Life, then will, always contain an inevitable surplus, a margin of the gratuitous, a realm in which there is always more than we need: more things, more impressions, more memories, more habits, more words, more happiness, more unhappiness.”
James Wood, How Fiction Works
“The sentence pulsates, moves in and out, toward the character and away from her—when we reach “huddled” we are reminded that an author allowed us to merge with his character, that the author’s magniloquent style is the envelope within which this generous contract is carried.”
James Wood, How Fiction Works
“This morning a splendid dawn passed over our house on its way to Kansas. This morning Kansas rolled out of its sleep into a sunlight grandly announced, proclaimed throughout heaven—one more of the very finite number of days that this old prairie has been called Kansas, or Iowa. But it has all been one day, that first day. Light is constant, we just turn over in it. So every day is in fact the selfsame evening and morning. My grandfather’s grave turned into the light, and the dew on his weedy little mortality patch was glorious.”
James Wood, How Fiction Works
“Convention itself, like metaphor itself, is not dead; but it is always dying.”
James Wood, How Fiction Works

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