Thursday, February 21, 2008

Writing Achonologically

You get a little of this and little of that in the Weblog of Norman Geras, including his Writer's Choice series. Here is an excellent piece by Angela Young:

I was given a proof copy of Maggie O'Farrell's first novel, After You'd Gone, in 1999. I can't remember why, now. It wasn't for review because I'm not a professional reviewer, and I didn't read it until 2002, at least two years after its publication, when a friend said how good she'd thought it. But when I picked it up I couldn't stop reading: I read it in a weekend. There was one point where the power of O'Farrell's writing had me sobbing and laughing at the same time: this is the only book that has had that double effect on me, but O'Farrell's visceral, spare writing style carries such emotional truth that it pulls deep emotional responses from the reader.

Later, After You'd Gone gave me the confidence to write my own first novel, Speaking of Love, achronologically, from various points of view and in both the third and the first person. O'Farrell does all these things in After You'd Gone, but so skilfully that you never lose the plot, and one of the reasons that you don't is that...

Read the rest to find out.

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