Let's go Vintage

sfoster

Staff Member
Moderator
Good Burger Reading GIF
 
An interesting list....but is there an question in there?
Not quite sure where I am going with this, but I loved English Comp 2 while everyone seemed to just want to get through the class. Each story is an amazing work of art and love breaking them down with all the elements in the story structure. Been awhile since I have really read and analyzed these stories but they are all amazing, I even have my college papers saved on a hard drive and should take another look at them :). I suppose I am inspired by these short stories and can help in my own writing.
 
Last edited:
O Henry, and Joseph Campbell are a few good sources for the study of story structure. Heinlein, Asimov, Churchill, Clavell, and Wouk for developing at large scale.

For interesting insights and visionary concepts that you can apply to your own stories, try reading the works of Plato and Socrates.

For insights into the technical utilization of semantics and grammar, Huxley and Chomsky.

For giving your work a poetic lilt, Poe and Bradbury.

I think you listed quite a few of the greats in terms of pure drama. Feels like you forgot Charles Dickens though, his insights into the construction of human drama are worth learning from.
 
Last edited:
O Henry, and Joseph Campbell are a few good sources for the study of story structure. Heinlein, Asimov, Churchill, Clavell, and Wouk for developing fiction at large scale.

For interesting insights and visionary concepts that you can apply to your own stories, try reading the works of Plato and Socrates.

For insights into the technical utilization of semantics and grammar, Huxley and Chomsky.

For giving your work a poetic lilt, Poe and Bradbury.

I think you listed quite a few of the greats in terms of pure drama. Feels like you forgot Charles Dickens though, his insights into the construction of human drama are worth learning from.
Oh I have many more authors I think are amazing, just didn't want to go overboard with posts lol! Haven't read the works of some of those Thanks for reply!
 
Last edited:


Had an in class discussion about Thoreau, was a real trip.

Sorry don't mean to thread bump, just came to mind.
Nathaniel Hawthorne.

I remember the first time I read House of Seven Gables, for a graduate level lit class. I remember close reading chapter two, slowly, word for word, sentence for sentence, and being knocked out. It struck me as cinematic--a moving focus, around the room, pausing here and there, to note a chair, a mirror, a portrait.

The story, at this point is that the ancient Hepsibah Pynchon, who, by necessity, because of financial difficulty, is trying to open a little shop in her home. But we are in no hurry to show this piece of plot. We following her, in a beautiful exercise in POV, as she wakes, and makes her way to begin "what it would be mockery to term the adornment of her person." We pause: "Far from us be the indecorum of assisting, even in imagination, at a maiden lady’s toilet!" Yet we have to "note some of the heavy sighs that labored from her bosom, with little restraint as to their lugubrious depth and volume of sound, inasmuch as they could be audible to nobody save a disembodied listener like ourself."

Anyway. There is a deapth of weirdness in Hawthorne, an erotic pull (as in Blithedale Eomance); a pull toward his puritan ancestors (as in Scarlet Letter--a Hawthorne, I believe, was prominent in a witch burning); and a pull toward something dark, universal, and perverse in human nature, something archetypal (if I believed in this archetype stuff, which I don't; there must be a better word, less tainted by mysticism, than "archetype" but, right now, I can't find it.) Anyway.

Anyway, I won't go on, except to mention the collection of stories, Mosses from an old Manse. There is stuff here, like the closing sentence of Young Goodman Brown, that just kills me.

There are writers who use prose for a purpose, that is, the purpose is transparent, to move a story, or whatever. And then there are a few, like Hawthorne, whose prose is a purpose in itself.

Anyway.
House of Seven Gables:
https://www.gutenberg.org/files/77/77-h/77-h.htm
Mosses From An Old Manse
https://www.gutenberg.org/files/512/512-h/512-h.htm
 
Last edited:
Ok, fine, I'll stop animating cats flying through zero gravity and talk serious lit for a second.

I recommend - The Magic Mountain by Thomas Mann. It's a philosophical novel where the inmates of a TB asylum discuss their perceptions of the meaning of life, personal struggles, and expired politics. It's like a mildly entertaining version of War and Peace. The tight focus on mortality, and the detailed array of characters and opinions made it an interesting read, back when I was very young, and thought time would be more forgiving in terms its inexorable march. I'm glad I read it though. Sort of. To this day I kind of wonder if I might not be a good deal happier if I couldn't do the math on my own demise, or pontificate the relative and ultimately immeasurable thing we call personal progress.

Anyway, nice to have people around that won't immediately judge me for my occasional venture into classic lit.
 
Last edited:
Top