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The Art of Subtext: Beyond Plot (Art Of...)

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The Art of Subtext: Beyond Plot (Art Of...) Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Please note that used books may not include additional media (study guides, CDs, DVDs, solutions manuals, etc.) as described in the publisher comments.

Publisher Comments:

The Art Of series is a new series of brief books by contemporary writers on important craft issues. Each book investigates an element of the craft of fiction, creative nonfiction, or poetry by discussing works by authors past and present. The books in the Art Of series are not strictly manuals, but serve readers and writers by illuminating aspects of the craft of writing that people think they already know but don't really know.

Fiction writer and essayist Charles Baxter's The Art of Subtext: Beyond Plot discusses and illustrates the hidden subtextual overtones and undertones in fictional works haunted by the unspoken, the suppressed, and the secreted. Using an array of examples from Melville and Dostoyevsky to contemporary writers Paula Fox, Edward P. Jones, and Lorrie Moore, Baxter explains how fiction writers create those visible and invisible details, how what is displayed evokes what is not displayed.

Review:

"Though there are passages where this slim, college-lecture-style volume turns facile or tiresome, novelist Baxter's analysis of 'the implied, the half-visible, and the unspoken' in literature is saved from irrelevance by a keen sense of pacing and a healthy dose of self-awareness (after confidently zooming through seminal works by Herman Melville, John Cheever, and F. Scott Fitzgerald, Baxter confesses, 'I feel that ... I am on the verge of what Walt Whitman calls "a usual mistake." I don't wish to simplify what is actually intricate'). Indeed, as the brief chapters of this little book build on each other, Baxter's observations-which initially seem more like interesting rhetorical devices than substantive arguments-gain clarity and momentum, and the accumulation of anecdotal asides about writers' workshops and former students turn them from annoying interjections into helpful indicators of Baxter's relationship with literature. Many of the issues raised in this volume are as old as the study of literature itself, but Baxter's ability to ask unusual and incisive questions of familiar topics (Why is the volatility of Dostoyevsky's characters so unpleasant? Why is it so difficult-and yet so vital-to describe facial features?) makes this little volume worthwhile for the engaged student of literature." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"The Art Of series is meant to restore criticism as an art, with writers examining features of their craft in lively and colorful prose." Charles Baxter

Book News Annotation:

In this collection of essays, Baxter (U. of Minnesota), a fiction writer and essayist, considers the technique of subtext in writing, its elements, and how they are brought to the surface. He provides examples of their use with characters, dialogue, inflection and metaphor, and in fiction and poetry, such as Bernardo Atxaga's Obabakoak, The Great Gatsby, and Dostoeyevsky's novels. There is no index. Annotation ©2008 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Synopsis:

Charles Baxter inaugurates The Art of, a new series on the craft of writing, with the wit and intelligence he brought to his celebrated book Burning Down the House: Essays on Fiction.

Fiction writer and essayist Charles Baxters The Art of Subtext: Beyond Plot discusses and illustrates the hidden subtextual overtones and undertones in fictional works haunted by the unspoken, the suppressed, and the secreted. Using an array of examples from Melville and Dostoyevsky to contemporary writers Paula Fox, Edward P. Jones, and Lorrie Moore, Baxter explains how fiction writers create those visible and invisible details, how what is displayed evokes what is not displayed.

The Art of Subtext is part of The Art of series, a new line of books by important authors on the craft of writing, edited by Charles Baxter. Each book examines a singular, but often assumed or neglected, issue facing the contemporary writer of fiction, nonfiction, or poetry. The Art of series means to restore the art of criticism while illuminating the art of writing.

Synopsis:

Charles Baxter inaugurates The Art of, a new series on the craft of writing, with the wit and intelligence he brought to his celebrated book Burning Down the House: Essays on Fiction.

Fiction writer and essayist Charles Baxters The Art of Subtext: Beyond Plot discusses and illustrates the hidden subtextual overtones and undertones in fictional works haunted by the unspoken, the suppressed, and the secreted. Using an array of examples from Melville and Dostoyevsky to contemporary writers Paula Fox, Edward P. Jones, and Lorrie Moore, Baxter explains how fiction writers create those visible and invisible details, how what is displayed evokes what is not displayed.

The Art of Subtext is part of The Art of series, a new line of books by important authors on the craft of writing, edited by Charles Baxter. Each book examines a singular, but often assumed or neglected, issue facing the contemporary writer of fiction, nonfiction, or poetry. The Art of series means to restore the art of criticism while illuminating the art of writing.

Charles Baxter is the author of ten books, including The Feast of Love, a finalist for the National Book Award, and Burning Down the House: Essays on Fiction. He teaches at the University of Minnesota and lives in Minneapolis.
Fiction writer and essayist Charles Baxters The Art of Subtext: Beyond Plot discusses and illustrates the hidden subtextual overtones and undertones in fictional works haunted by the unspoken, the suppressed, and the secreted. Using an array of examples from Melville and Dostoyevsky to contemporary writers Paula Fox, Edward P. Jones, and Lorrie Moore, Baxter explains how fiction writers create those visible and invisible details, how what is displayed evokes what is not displayed.

The Art of Subtext is part of The Art of series, a line of books by important authors on the craft of writing, edited by Charles Baxter. Each book examines a singular, but often assumed or neglected, issue facing the contemporary writer of fiction, nonfiction, or poetry. The Art of series means to restore the art of criticism while illuminating the art of writing.  Of the series, Baxter writes, “The Art of series is meant to restore criticism as an art, with writers examining features of their craft in lively and colorful prose.”

"Think of subtext in fiction as water; its characters, swimmers on the surface. Like water, subtext is everywhere, ubiquitous and buoyant, darker in its depths, the stuff of immersion. The beauty of Baxter's inaugural entry in Graywolf's . . . 'Art of' series, which draws on examples in literature to instruct on the writing craft, is that it doesn't assume to try and capture the whole of subtext . . . Instead, it focuses on very specific qualities composing it: the art of staging in a story, the importance of inflection in dialog, the ambiguity of motivation. To make the often translucent substance more visible, Baxter highlights excerpts from a wide range of fiction, from the contemporaneous and familiar to the foreign and esoteric . . . Baxter's book will help readers read more creatively and writers to float their stories . . . Highly recommended for all academic libraries."—Maria Kochis, Library Journal
"Think of subtext in fiction as water; its characters, swimmers on the surface. Like water, subtext is everywhere, ubiquitous and buoyant, darker in its depths, the stuff of immersion. The beauty of Baxter's inaugural entry in Graywolf's . . . 'Art of' series, which draws on examples in literature to instruct on the writing craft, is that it doesn't assume to try and capture the whole of subtext. What book could? Instead, it focuses on very specific qualities composing it: the art of staging in a story, the importance of inflection in dialog, the ambiguity of motivation. To make the often translucent substance more visible, Baxter highlights excerpts from a wide range of fiction, from the contemporaneous and familiar to the foreign and esoteric . . . Baxter's book will help readers read more creatively and writers to float their stories . . . Highly recommended for all academic libraries."—Maria Kochis, Library Journal

"Baxter's analysis of 'the implied, the half-visible, and the unspoken' in literature [has] a keen sense of pacing and a healthy dose of self-awareness . . . Indeed, as the brief chapters of this little book build on each other, Baxter's observations . . . gain clarity and momentum . . . Many of the issues raised in this volume are as old as the study of literature itself, but Baxter's ability to ask unusual and incisive questions of familiar topics (Why is the volatility of Dostoyevsky's characters so unpleasant? Why is it so difficult—and yet so vital—to describe facial features?) makes this little volume worthwhile for the engaged student of literature."—Publishers Weekly

Praise for Charles Baxters Burning Down the House: Essays on Fiction:

“What elevates this collection from the status of technical manual (which it also is, and a brilliant one at that) is Mr. Baxters rare ability to gauge the capacities of fiction for conveying an image not only of individual existence, but of the characteristic feel of a time, a culture, a way of life.”The Washington Times

“The most pleasurable and instructive book on the craft since John Gardners The Art of Fiction.”—City Pages

About the Author

Charles Baxter is the author of ten books, including The Feast of Love, a finalist for the National Book Award, and Burning Down the House: Essays on Fiction. He teaches at the University of Minnesota and lives in Minneapolis.

Product Details

ISBN:
9781555974732
Author:
Baxter, Charles
Publisher:
Graywolf Press
Subject:
Writing Skills
Subject:
Fiction
Subject:
History and criticism
Subject:
Composition & Creative Writing - Fiction
Subject:
Reference/Writing
Edition Description:
Trade Paperback
Series:
Art Of...
Publication Date:
20070731
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
120
Dimensions:
6.61 x 5.45 x 0.545 in

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Related Subjects


Reference » Writing » Fiction
Reference » Writing » General

The Art of Subtext: Beyond Plot (Art Of...) Used Trade Paper
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Product details 120 pages Graywolf Press - English 9781555974732 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Though there are passages where this slim, college-lecture-style volume turns facile or tiresome, novelist Baxter's analysis of 'the implied, the half-visible, and the unspoken' in literature is saved from irrelevance by a keen sense of pacing and a healthy dose of self-awareness (after confidently zooming through seminal works by Herman Melville, John Cheever, and F. Scott Fitzgerald, Baxter confesses, 'I feel that ... I am on the verge of what Walt Whitman calls "a usual mistake." I don't wish to simplify what is actually intricate'). Indeed, as the brief chapters of this little book build on each other, Baxter's observations-which initially seem more like interesting rhetorical devices than substantive arguments-gain clarity and momentum, and the accumulation of anecdotal asides about writers' workshops and former students turn them from annoying interjections into helpful indicators of Baxter's relationship with literature. Many of the issues raised in this volume are as old as the study of literature itself, but Baxter's ability to ask unusual and incisive questions of familiar topics (Why is the volatility of Dostoyevsky's characters so unpleasant? Why is it so difficult-and yet so vital-to describe facial features?) makes this little volume worthwhile for the engaged student of literature." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "The Art Of series is meant to restore criticism as an art, with writers examining features of their craft in lively and colorful prose."
"Synopsis" by ,
Charles Baxter inaugurates The Art of, a new series on the craft of writing, with the wit and intelligence he brought to his celebrated book Burning Down the House: Essays on Fiction.

Fiction writer and essayist Charles Baxters The Art of Subtext: Beyond Plot discusses and illustrates the hidden subtextual overtones and undertones in fictional works haunted by the unspoken, the suppressed, and the secreted. Using an array of examples from Melville and Dostoyevsky to contemporary writers Paula Fox, Edward P. Jones, and Lorrie Moore, Baxter explains how fiction writers create those visible and invisible details, how what is displayed evokes what is not displayed.

The Art of Subtext is part of The Art of series, a new line of books by important authors on the craft of writing, edited by Charles Baxter. Each book examines a singular, but often assumed or neglected, issue facing the contemporary writer of fiction, nonfiction, or poetry. The Art of series means to restore the art of criticism while illuminating the art of writing.

"Synopsis" by ,
Charles Baxter inaugurates The Art of, a new series on the craft of writing, with the wit and intelligence he brought to his celebrated book Burning Down the House: Essays on Fiction.

Fiction writer and essayist Charles Baxters The Art of Subtext: Beyond Plot discusses and illustrates the hidden subtextual overtones and undertones in fictional works haunted by the unspoken, the suppressed, and the secreted. Using an array of examples from Melville and Dostoyevsky to contemporary writers Paula Fox, Edward P. Jones, and Lorrie Moore, Baxter explains how fiction writers create those visible and invisible details, how what is displayed evokes what is not displayed.

The Art of Subtext is part of The Art of series, a new line of books by important authors on the craft of writing, edited by Charles Baxter. Each book examines a singular, but often assumed or neglected, issue facing the contemporary writer of fiction, nonfiction, or poetry. The Art of series means to restore the art of criticism while illuminating the art of writing.

Charles Baxter is the author of ten books, including The Feast of Love, a finalist for the National Book Award, and Burning Down the House: Essays on Fiction. He teaches at the University of Minnesota and lives in Minneapolis.
Fiction writer and essayist Charles Baxters The Art of Subtext: Beyond Plot discusses and illustrates the hidden subtextual overtones and undertones in fictional works haunted by the unspoken, the suppressed, and the secreted. Using an array of examples from Melville and Dostoyevsky to contemporary writers Paula Fox, Edward P. Jones, and Lorrie Moore, Baxter explains how fiction writers create those visible and invisible details, how what is displayed evokes what is not displayed.

The Art of Subtext is part of The Art of series, a line of books by important authors on the craft of writing, edited by Charles Baxter. Each book examines a singular, but often assumed or neglected, issue facing the contemporary writer of fiction, nonfiction, or poetry. The Art of series means to restore the art of criticism while illuminating the art of writing.  Of the series, Baxter writes, “The Art of series is meant to restore criticism as an art, with writers examining features of their craft in lively and colorful prose.”

"Think of subtext in fiction as water; its characters, swimmers on the surface. Like water, subtext is everywhere, ubiquitous and buoyant, darker in its depths, the stuff of immersion. The beauty of Baxter's inaugural entry in Graywolf's . . . 'Art of' series, which draws on examples in literature to instruct on the writing craft, is that it doesn't assume to try and capture the whole of subtext . . . Instead, it focuses on very specific qualities composing it: the art of staging in a story, the importance of inflection in dialog, the ambiguity of motivation. To make the often translucent substance more visible, Baxter highlights excerpts from a wide range of fiction, from the contemporaneous and familiar to the foreign and esoteric . . . Baxter's book will help readers read more creatively and writers to float their stories . . . Highly recommended for all academic libraries."—Maria Kochis, Library Journal
"Think of subtext in fiction as water; its characters, swimmers on the surface. Like water, subtext is everywhere, ubiquitous and buoyant, darker in its depths, the stuff of immersion. The beauty of Baxter's inaugural entry in Graywolf's . . . 'Art of' series, which draws on examples in literature to instruct on the writing craft, is that it doesn't assume to try and capture the whole of subtext. What book could? Instead, it focuses on very specific qualities composing it: the art of staging in a story, the importance of inflection in dialog, the ambiguity of motivation. To make the often translucent substance more visible, Baxter highlights excerpts from a wide range of fiction, from the contemporaneous and familiar to the foreign and esoteric . . . Baxter's book will help readers read more creatively and writers to float their stories . . . Highly recommended for all academic libraries."—Maria Kochis, Library Journal

"Baxter's analysis of 'the implied, the half-visible, and the unspoken' in literature [has] a keen sense of pacing and a healthy dose of self-awareness . . . Indeed, as the brief chapters of this little book build on each other, Baxter's observations . . . gain clarity and momentum . . . Many of the issues raised in this volume are as old as the study of literature itself, but Baxter's ability to ask unusual and incisive questions of familiar topics (Why is the volatility of Dostoyevsky's characters so unpleasant? Why is it so difficult—and yet so vital—to describe facial features?) makes this little volume worthwhile for the engaged student of literature."—Publishers Weekly

Praise for Charles Baxters Burning Down the House: Essays on Fiction:

“What elevates this collection from the status of technical manual (which it also is, and a brilliant one at that) is Mr. Baxters rare ability to gauge the capacities of fiction for conveying an image not only of individual existence, but of the characteristic feel of a time, a culture, a way of life.”The Washington Times

“The most pleasurable and instructive book on the craft since John Gardners The Art of Fiction.”—City Pages

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