Confessions of A Young Novelist

Confessions of A Young Novelist

Book - 2011
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Umberto Eco published his first novel, The Name of the Rose, in 1980, when he was nearly fifty. In these confessions, the author, now in his late seventies, looks back on his long career as a theorist and his more recent work as a novelist, and explores their fruitful conjunction. He begins by exploring the boundary between fiction and nonfiction--playfully, seriously, brilliantly roaming across this frontier. Good nonfiction, he believes, is crafted like a whodunnit, and a skilled novelist builds precisely detailed worlds through observation and research. Taking us on a tour of his own creative method, Eco recalls how he designed his fictional realms. He began with specific images, made choices of period, location, and voice, composed stories that would appeal to both sophisticated and popular readers. The blending of the real and the fictive extends to the inhabitants of such invented worlds. Why are we moved to tears by a character's plight? In what sense do Anna Karenina, Gregor Samsa, and Leopold Bloom exist? At once a medievalist, philosopher, and scholar of modern literature, Eco astonishes above all when he considers the pleasures of enumeration. He shows that the humble list, the potentially endless series, enables us to glimpse the infinite and approach the ineffable. This young novelist is a master who has wise things to impart about the art of fiction and the power of words.
Publisher: Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, 2011
ISBN: 9780674058699
Branch Call Number: 853.914 ECO 2011 22
Characteristics: 231 p

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theorbys Feb 23, 2013

An easy, informal read by a charming fellow who knows he is smart and charming. He really enjoys literature of every sort, and his enthusiasm is a bit contagious. He has read 10 times more than me, and remembers it all too !

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