Flannery O’Connor Archive
It seems that every book I’ve read recently has a talking animal in it. A new favorite is Max Porter’s novel, which begins with a protagonist opening the door to find a life-sized crow on his doorstep. The bird picks the man up, cradles him in his wings.
In many ways, visual art gave birth to literature. The first stories written down were cave paintings. For years our alphabet was made up of pictographs which simply meant that the only people who could tell stories were those who could draw.
Bruce Springsteen often tells stories in his songs which investigate the human condition, the lyrics following a narrative arc with a clear beginning, middle and end. It is therefore not surprising that fiction is one of the places where he finds inspiration.
I’ve always had a wretched time titling my writing. It’s the last thing I do with any piece, and not without a lot of deep sighing. In panic mode I have a rattling tendency to latch on to songs; just in the short history of my posts here, I’ve
You just don’t see enough literary fiction about bears. If, like me, you prefer your nutritious reading with a side of mauling, you should pick up Matthew Neil Null’s Allegheny Front. Erudite, unsentimental, and alert to the natural world, Null turns the history of West Virginia into stories that
Early in the speech that Barack Obama gave last year to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of “Bloody Sunday,” standing in front of the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Alabama, the president asked, “What can be more American than what happened in this place?” That line deserved more attention than it
Contrast is the visual artist’s most powerful tool. Contrast does not necessarily mean opposite. Evil and contentment, white and off-white are both contrasts, but they are not opposites. Artists use a spectrum of tools to achieve contrast: color and light, saturation and tone shading and line, focus, scale and
Body language is the nonverbal expression of emotion and thought—a form of communicating arguably more effective than the system made up of words. Words are adequate for the less complex task of conveying information, but body language and tone do the heavy lifting. By some estimates only 7 percent
Flannery O’Connor wrote, “The longer you look at one object, the more of the world you see in it.” In her second-person flash fiction piece “How to Eat Chicken Wings,” (Tin House/The Open Bar) Kristen Arnett takes a long look at the object in her title, and what’s revealed
Literary Enemies: Flannery O’Connor vs. Marilynne Robinson Disclaimer: Marilynne Robinson has no enemies. I hope you’ve never compared Marilynne Robinson to Flannery O’Connor, but I can see how you might have been tempted. There’s Iowa, first of all, and if it weren’t a proper noun I would have capitalized