Art of Revision in the Short Stories of V.S. Pritchett and William Trevor

Overview

This pioneering critical study of Pritchett and Trevor is intended for scholar and general reader alike. It is the first to draw on extensive, unpublished archival holdings, including manuscripts, notebooks, and correspondence. Tracing the growth of their short stories from initial idea through publication, it reveals how they create the "unsaid" element that gives the reader an interpretive role; explores their transformation of actual incidents and people into fiction, including those in their own lives; and ...

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Overview

This pioneering critical study of Pritchett and Trevor is intended for scholar and general reader alike. It is the first to draw on extensive, unpublished archival holdings, including manuscripts, notebooks, and correspondence. Tracing the growth of their short stories from initial idea through publication, it reveals how they create the "unsaid" element that gives the reader an interpretive role; explores their transformation of actual incidents and people into fiction, including those in their own lives; and discusses their important relationships with editors, especially those at the New Yorker. Finally, in-depth comparisons of published stories show their contrasting approaches to shared themes, their apparent mutual influence, and the central role of fantasy in their work.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Dr. Bloom has done a great service for our understanding not only of V. S. Pritchett and William Trevor, but of the way short stories work, and the ways in which their authors polish, recast and revise them. He understands to perfection the subtle means by which the best short stories blend the art of narrative with the art of poetry, each, as it were, drawing just the right attention to the other. His own concluding chapter—'English Fantasy and Irish Entrapment,' is itself a masterpiece of afterthought and sympathetic analysis."—John Bayley, Oxford University

"Here is a serious, scrupulous and fascinating piece of scholarship that examines the working methods of two modern masters of the short story, V. S. Pritchett and William Trevor, using their drafts, revisions and correspondence with editors to take you to the heart of the imaginative process."—Claire Tomalin, Whitbread Prize winner for Biography

"Jonathan Bloom has written a valuable appreciation of two of the world's very finest short story writers, an insightful close reading focusing purely and respectfully on the stories themselves."—Jhumpa Lahiri, Pulitzer Prize winner for Fiction

"By invoking a range of complementary approaches—critical, textual, and occasionally biographical—and combining general assessments with detailed examinations of particular works, Jonathan Bloom succeeds not only in celebrating the work of Pritchett and Trevor themselves but also in reinforcing the status of the short story as a major literary genre."—Michael Millgate, University of Toronto

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781403973252
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publication date: 11/28/2006
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 272
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.62 (d)

Meet the Author

Jonathan Bloom holds degrees from Princeton University and the University of Paris, and a D.Phil. from St. John's College, Oxford. He has taught at the universities of Paris and Oxford and his work has appeared in such publications as the Sewanee Review and the Journal of the Short Story in English. He has been a Harry Ransom Center Fellow and is currently working on an edition of the letters and diaries of V. S. Pritchett. He lives in Paris.

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Table of Contents

Introduction
• Fanfare for the Common Man
• Revision as Transformation: The Making and Remaking of V.S. Pritchett's "You Make Your Own Life"
• William Trevor's "Distillation of an Essence": From "Meeting Mrs. Faraday" to "Cocktails at Doney's"
• V.S. Pritchett's Ministering Angell
• Real Incursions in Fictive Worlds
• Living on the Other Side of the Frontier
• The Roads Taken Make All The Difference: Comic Spirit and Tragic Comedian
• English Fantasy and Irish Entrapment

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