Post by losingmydignity on Apr 10, 2006 23:56:42 GMT -5
So you would consider Ulysses a psychological novel or a character study? Or Beckett's novel trilogy. I ask because those are the first books that come to my mind when I think of plotless books. Or Alain Robbe Grillet's totally non-linear books where he attempted to do without psychology altogether? (not totally successful in my opinion). You don't like that heavy-handed Theodore Dreiser statement making plotted kind of novel do you?
And the New Yorker's stories usually have quite traditional kinds of plots and endings (think Alice Munro, et al.).
I've never read Ricky Moody or David Eggers. I have a feeling I'm better off keeping it that way.
I'm talking out my ass like usual. You're right on Ulysses and Beckett, just like you could also be with Woolf or other "modernist" and "post modern" writers. You're also right that psychological or character study is too limited for what I was getting at. I really meant "stories" that don't follow a conflict/resolution model (for which Robbe-Grillet is perfect). But then, I also didn't really mean that, because I actually like Beckett and Robbe-Grillet a lot.
In truth, I was trying to sound smart and really only thinking of certain "post-modern" writers who act like narrative and plot is cliche that I find personally irritating (Eggers' crew...read the contributors to McSweeney's). Hardly enough to generalize.
(And Moody can be fun but Eggers drives me up the wall. Of course I realize that he's one of those people who, if you don't like him, you're just not playing the same game...and I'm willing to admit that I'm just not into that game.)
Truth be told: what bothers me in fiction is stuff that doesn't seem to enjoy being fictional. I mean that whether it be 19th century "realist" novels or recent short stories that try to capture a contemporary "mindset." I don't turn to fiction for a mirror of myself. I want to see what's possible, potential, interesting, or novel, not just a representation of what is.
But why does this matter? It doesn't. I'm just not editing as I type.
I find myself in agreement with everything you wrote here. And I'm not just being lazy. Damn....and I wanted to piss you off... ;D
I don't think I can get with the McSweeney's crowd. That stuff is annoying.