Saturday, February 14, 2009

Then she lit a cigarette

So once we got into the room we got comfortable. In the panel are Richard Bausch (my mentor) Alan Weir, from the university of Tennessee and finally Lisa Engel from the University of Rutgers.

The panel discussed the fictional gesture. The use of tags after literature.

Alan talked about the great gesture of literary yearning as the green light.

He quouted a blogger, maudnewton.com who is a teacher who complained about novels which spend 500 pages talking about small gestures and avoid the power of actual events or life. Only the seemingly endless gestures from folding, unfolding towels and taking drinks of water.

He then quoted a literary journal which seems to excuse the use of gestures as a way to convey verbal ticks. Seemed funny.

Finally, he talked about the Grand Canyon rule of show don't tell: in which he means that it us one thing to tell us about falling down the grand canyon but actually feel like it is happening.

That set the stage for Bausch who is one of the best in dialogue, which allows the story to be pushed forward and some stories without any tags at all.

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