Nov 16, 2009

Cormac McCarthy's Understanding of Short Fiction Is Kind of Different Than Mine

In this conversation with the Wall Street Journal (mostly about the upcoming movie based on his novel The Road*), Cormac McCarthy says, "I'm not interested in writing short stories. Anything that doesn't take years of your life and drive you to suicide hardly seems worth doing."

I don't know about you, but I read that part and immediately thought about all of the short stories I've worked on over years of my life, and by which I have been driven to (if not suicide) maddened distraction. And then I thought, Yeesh. McCarthy, you don't know nothing about short stories.

The Road is a fine, fine book, though. I'm not sure I want to see the movie because I fear that all of the greatness of the book might be invisible to film as a medium.

*But he also talks about being the 76-year-old-father of an 11-year-old son, which made me think that he should be reading Marilynne Robinson's Gilead, if he hasn't already.
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