March 5, 2019

On Novels that Span a Lifetime

By Aatif Rashid

There’s a famous theory (attributed to Aristotle, though in reality the result of misinterpretations of his work made by Renaissance humanists) that a good tragedy should follow the three unities, […]

November 6, 2018

On Titles

By Aatif Rashid

It’s always amusing to read about the original titles of famous novels. A few years ago an infographic from Jonkers Rare Books made the rounds on the Internet and revealed […]

August 6, 2018

On Beginnings

By Aatif Rashid

Last week, I discussed endings, specifically screenwriter Michael Arndt’s theory of endings as they applied to works of literary fiction. In addition to his video on endings, Arndt’s website also […]

July 30, 2018

On Endings

By Aatif Rashid

In 2014, when I was still entertaining hopes of being a screenwriter as well as a fiction writer, I went to the Austin Film Festival and heard a lecture on […]

July 10, 2018

On a Novel’s First Line

By Aatif Rashid

Perhaps it’s the economic realities of trying to publish literary fiction in an age of late capitalism, or perhaps it’s simply our culture’s diminishing attention span, but the first line […]

October 11, 2013

Skyscrapers of Light

By Brian Michael Murphy

In 1938, Westinghouse buried a time capsule in a section of Queens described as a “valley of ashes” in The Great Gatsby. The time capsule was supposed to contain a […]

May 23, 2011

Short Takes: Shapes of the Masters

By Andrew David King

Why Salinger looks like a knotty tangle, and Woolf a bunch of loose rectangles. The posthumous secret to happiness–or, at least, free will. (Sort of.) Getting work out there can […]