Literary Fiction Category

Joyce, Wallace, Woolf and More Wrote in Fractals

For writers who never did well in math, you might be surprised to learn that literature contains fractals. Fractals are geometric figures made of small components that have statistical characteristics identical to the whole. If you zoom in on a fractal, you see the same shapes again and again no matter how far you zoom […]

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The Year of Reading Women

There’s an important essay going around that, if you haven’t read it yet, you should read now before finishing this post. It’s called On Pandering by Claire Vaye Watkins, who is known to me by her fantastic 2013 debut collection of short stories, Battleborn, which won five literary awards. The essay is actually a speech […]

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Literary Fiction is a Mental Workout

Just when I was getting worried about the waning interest in fiction comes this little piece of research from a professor at Stanford University. Joshua Landy, an associate professor of French and Italian, found that literary works of fiction offer “a new set of methods for becoming a better maker of arguments, a better redeemer […]

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Your E-Book Is Reading You

I don’t have a Kindle or any other kind of e-book. I prefer paper to plastic when it comes to a “screen.” I’ve said it before in other forums, but the ideal electronic book for me would be a paperback-like object — one that was bendable, smelled like paper and had 200 or so pages […]

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