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Passing the Word: Writers on Their Mentors
     

Passing the Word: Writers on Their Mentors

by Jeffrey Skinner, Lee Martin
 

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In this anthology, distinguished writers explore the relevance of mentors in their education and development as writers. Each author contributes an essay and a story or poem, which together give a unique sense of the forces that shape a writer's craft and vision.

Overview

In this anthology, distinguished writers explore the relevance of mentors in their education and development as writers. Each author contributes an essay and a story or poem, which together give a unique sense of the forces that shape a writer's craft and vision.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
This cleverly arranged anthology, edited by poet Skinner (The Company of Heaven) and memoirist Martin (From Our House), pairs personal essays by established writers on their mentors along with an original work of fiction or poetry by those writers to illustrate the qualities they have discussed. This volume makes a significant contribution to our understanding of how an older generation of writers most of them college teachers has affected its students. Some of the essays have been published previously, such as "Studying with Miss Bishop," Dana Gioia's vibrant portrayal of Elizabeth Bishop's somewhat eccentric teaching of modern poetry at Harvard, as well as "Raymond Carver: A Still, Small Voice," Jay McInerney's description of "fall[ing]under Carver's spell," of learning to treat words "very, very gingerly." In "A Double Kind of Knowing," Elizabeth Graver analyzes her two-tiered relationship with Annie Dillard, and mentors in general: "to encounter writers as teachers in the classroom, and then also to go deeper, sitting, solitary, with the pages they have written... the language of their souls." At times we see direct links between the creative work presented and the mentor previously described, such as Tess Gallagher's poem "Behave," in which she describes "Roethke, my other long gone father." Other pairings are more opaquely connected. Most of these discussions attest to some conflict between welcoming the influence of a mentor and maintaining the integrity of one's own voice. As Reginald Shepherd writes, "I confess that I've never been much of a prot?g?... I have opinions and convictions, or at least obstinacy and willfulness." Readers of this work, especially those who are writersthemselves, will enjoy the many memories presented here with subtlety and admiration. (Aug.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781936747412
Publisher:
Sarabande Books
Publication date:
07/01/2001
Series:
Writer's Studio
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
231
File size:
833 KB

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