Prufrock's Page

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Novel Vs Short Story

David Edenbach, a writer who claims to be inspired by Rushdie and Faulkner, on the two forms:

“I actually think novels are easier than short stories, because there is that sort of forgiveness of the long period of time that you're working on it. You sort of know that you're going to screw up, and you're going to have another half a year to fix that one screw up.

“And also the reader is sort of forgiving of a novel. You know, in Moby Dick, you're going to get a million pages on harpoons, and the reader says, 'Okay, I can learn about harpoons for a little while.' But it in a short story, the reader doesn't have that patience. And you do feel like, also, that since it's born out of a more discrete impulse, that you want to get it done in a quicker period of time. Or, I do. So that you don't have the half year to correct the screw up.

“And the reader doesn't have the half year to get into all your little pockets. They want the story to open, and close.”


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