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 | 848 Days Ago
Hints on Writing Short Stories by Charles Joseph Finger (1922). In the first place, there must be Sincerity. Without that nothing can be done. Sincere work will be good work, and sincere work will be original work. With sincerity, you will have honesty and simplicity, both of which are cardinal virtues in the literary man. Also, with sincerity there will be courage. You know, as well as I know, that when you meet an in- sincere man, you detect him at once. Were you ever deceived, for instance, by the rounded periods of some political rhetorician? Perhaps for a moment you may have been carried away in spite of your better sense, but, certainly, the effect was not lasting. Examining yourself, you will certainly remember that before you could persuade others, you had to be thoroughly convinced of the essential right of the thing itself. In the same fashion then, you must be persuaded of the truth of that which you wish to be accepted when writing. I do not speak of controversial matters. I write of fiction. You must have so thoroughly identified yourself with your characters that they are as living creatures to you. Then only shall they be living characters to your readers. If you have read the Pickwick Papers and have learned to know and love Samuel Pickwick, you will know exactly what I mean. In that character, the young Charles Dickens lost himself. In creating Mr. Pickwick he was entirely sincere. He watched the character grow from a somewhat simple-minded old gentleman to a lovable, jolly fellow to meet whom you would walk half round the world. Pick- wick was real to Dickens; therefore he is real to us. Observe this too; he had his faults. Mr. Pickwick would not have been considered rna good or a moral character to many of the “unco guid” of today. He often drank too much. Had there been nation wide prohibition in England in his day, he would certainly have drunk home brew with Ben Allen and Bob Sawyer exactly as he went to prison for conscience sake. He and his companions enjoyed the pleasures of the table too well for latter day tastes. He was obstinate on occasion, just as I am obstinate. Had Dickens been insincere, he might have been tempted to sponge out the bad spots in his character. But then he would have given us something that was not a man. The truth is that we want something of the sensuous and the gross in those about us. None of us want to live with angels and saints. So we reject instinctively as impossible and unpleasant, those perfect, etherealized creations some times found in stories — those returns all compounded of nobility, courage, beauty, generosity and wisdom which insincere writers try to foist upon us. They do not ring true. We detect their hollowness just as we detect the hollowness of the flamboyant boastings of the political orator.
 | 857 Days Ago
The Elements of the Short Story by Edward Everett Hale and Fredrick Thomas Dawson, (1915). The legend of Sleepy Hollow, by W. Irving.--Rip Van Winkle, by W. Irving.--Irving as a story writer.--The great stone face, by N. Hawthorne.--Ethan Brand, by N. Hawthorne.--Hawthorne as a story writer.--The fall of the house of Usher, by E. A. Poe.--The murders in the Rue Morgue, by E. A. Poe.--Poe as a story writer.--The diamond lens, by F.-J. O'Brien.--The man without a country, by E. E. Hale.--The outcasts of Poker Flat, by F. B. Harte.--Some recent stories. I. The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. . .Washington Irving - II. Rip Van Winkle Washington Irving - III. Irving as a Story Writer - IV. The Great Stone Face. . .Nathaniel Hawthorne V. Ethan Brand . . .Nathaniel Hawthorne - VI. Hawthorne as a Story Writer - VII. The Fall oe the House of Usher .Edgar Allan Poe - VIII. The Murders in the Rue Morgue. Edgar Allan Poe - IX. Poe as a Story Writer - X. The Diamond Lens - Fitz-James O'Brien - XI. The Man Without A Country . . . Edward Everett Hale - XII. The Outcasts of Poker Flat. . .Francis Bret Harte. - XIII. Some Recent Stories rn
 | 857 Days Ago
The Short Story by William Patterson Atkinson, (1916). Bibliography: p. xxv. Contains references. Washington Irving: Rip Van Winkle.--Edgar Allan Poe: The gold bug, The purloined letter.--Nathaniel Hawthorne: Howe's masquerade, The birthmark.--Francis Bret Harte: The outcasts of Poker Flat.--Robert Louis Stevenson: The Sire de Malétroit's door, Markheim.--Rudyard Kipling: Wee Willie Winkie. I. Definition and Development rnII. Forms - III. The Short-story as Narration - IV. Representative Short-stories
 | 858 Days Ago
The Modern Short Story: a study of the form: its plot, structure, development and other requirements. By Lucy Lilian Notestein, (1914). The object of this book is to state as clearly as may be, just what the modern Short-story is, and to enumerate and expound the principles underlying the most typical examples of this distinctive kind of fiction. An experience of several years as a teacher of college classes in Short-story writing convinced me that in the case of my own students I could secure better results by the use of a text- book different in type from any of those available. Some of the existing works on the subject treat in a borate detail the development of the Short-story from the time of the narratives of the Egyptian papyri; others confuse the student by discussing at too great length many related forms of merely short fiction. In regard to other more or less admirable texts, I have only to say that my method differs from that laid down in any of them. In teaching the writing of the Short-story, I have thought it best to hold to the strictly* modern form, and to leave the history of its evolution as matter for a separate and distinct course of study. I soon became convinced that I should have to make a restatement of what is known about the Short-story in the order which experience taught me was most serviceable from the teacher's point of view.
 | 858 Days Ago
Short Story: its Principles and Structure by Evelyn May Albright, (1907). The aim of this book is not to trace the origin or the development of the short-story, but to set forth some standards of appreciation of what is good in storywriting, illustrating by the practice of the masters as contrasted with amateurish failures : this with the view of rousing the student to a more lively interest in his eading, and of awakening such a wholesome spirit of self-criticism as shall enable him to improve his own workmanship, should he feel called to write. It is expected that one who undertakes to study or to write short-stories will become acquainted at first hand with the masterpieces of this art. With this in view, a reading-list has been appended, roughly classified in parallel arrangement with the topics studied in the text. The list includes, besides a number of stories generally recognized as great, a fairly representative selection from recent magazines. It is the author's belief that not only the masterpiece but the story which is moderately good can be made a profitable study in construction for the beginner. But it has been the aim to lay due stress, within the text, on those elements of greatness which distinguish the masterpiece from the average short-story. I. Introductory - II. Gathering Material - III. The Motive as the Source op Plot - IV. Plot - V. Mechanism - VI. Unity of Impression - VII. The Title - VIII. Characterization - IX. Dialogue - X. The Setting - XI. The Realistic Movement - XII. The Element of Fantasy - XIII. The Emotional Element - XIV. The Spirit of the Author
 | 860 Days Ago
The Short Story a Technical and Literary Study by E. A. Cross, (Ethan Allen), (1914). The Short Story is a literary form as distinct as the novel or epic poem and almost as uniformly true to its technical type as the ballade or sonnet. This book is written for the numerous readers who enjoy the best short stories in the magazines, in the hope that it may be an aid to them in getting at the meaning of these stories through an understanding of their construction. One who occasionally reads poetry may get some pleasure from the reading of a poem composed in one of the standard poetic forms without knowing anything about the kinds of lyrics, but the reader who understands the technic of the sonnet or ballade derives an added pleasure from reading poems in these forms when he is aware that the author's meaning, his theme, has been embodied skillfully in an exquisite fixed form. An observer who is acquainted with the details of architecture delights in looking upon a finished structure, beautiful, stately, well adapted to its intended use, in which he recognizes a conformity to the laws of construction, an embodiment of historic lines in the decoration and total effect, and the successful conquest of difficulties in order to accomplish the result in the standard technical requirements of architecture.
 | 860 Days Ago
The Contemporary Short Story, a Practical Manual by Harry Torsey Baker, ( 1916). A distinguished British critic, Professor Hugh Walker, remarks: "There is no other form of literature in which America is so eminent as in the writing of short stories." This dictum alone is sufficient justification for introducing a course in this subject into every college in the land. Not only is a better understanding and appreciation of the finest short stories fostered by such a course, but not a few students find themselves able to write tales that are accepted by reputable American periodicals — if not during their undergraduate years, at any rate shortly afterward. Writing fiction for the magazines is both an art and a business. This volume accordingly aims to teach promising young authors, whether in or out of college, how to write stories that shall be marketable as well as artistic. It attempts to state succinctly, and as clearly as may be, some fundamental principles of short-story writing. These principles are based upon somewhat extensive reading of short fiction in English, both classic and contemporary; of a pretty large number of manuscripts submitted to important periodicals; and of most of the critical works on the short story. Many of the pages are written from the editorial standpoint. I have not attempted to set up an impracticable ideal on the one hand, nor to concede too much to the lower range of popular taste on the other.
 | 860 Days Ago
A Manual of the Short Story Art by Glenn Clark (1922). This book was written with an eye on the student, not on the rules of composition and rhetoric. It conceives of the student as a creature who loves to use his eyes and ears, and who takes delight in playing the amateur detective and in raveling and unravelling plots. It assumes that a young man or a young woman is filled to overflowing with warm, living interests and desires and aspirations which, taken together, constitute a greater driving force toward success in writing than anything which the textbooks and teachers can give him. By taking advantage of these natural desires and instincts and not working against them it is believed that the teacher may best "draw out" the student to the fullest self-expression. One of these deep-seated instincts of the student is to see things in the concrete. For that reason the method of presenting exercises commonly used in this book is the so-called "projective method." Instead of being asked to describe a city street, the student is asked to read a sentence that helps him to visualize a street and then to write down what he sees.
 | 861 Days Ago
Art In Short Story Narration: A Searching Analysis of the Qualifications of Fiction in General, and of the Short Story in Particular, with Copious Examples, Making the Work A PRACTICAL TREATISE. By Henry Albert Phillips, (1913). Many books have been written bearing chiefly upon the technical side of fiction construction, but few — indeed, if any — have taken a step further and undertaken to analyze and reconstruct the artistic qualifications essential to fiction literature. Sometimes it is easier to tell how to do a thing, than it is to do it or to define intelligently the nature of the thing to be done. The literary craft has been informed so often how it should do its work, that it seems refreshing to be told in definite terms just what that work is." Art in Short Story Narration," then, is a book of unusual timeliness. Never before, have so many short stories been written — and published; never before has there been such a vast army of tyros — and such a great company of successful authors. In like proportion, the field for technical lore and critical discussion has advanced and widened apace.
 | 861 Days Ago
Studying the Short Story: sixteen short-story classics, with introductions, notes and a new laboratory study method for individual reading and use in colleges and schools. By J. Berg Esenwein (Joseph Berg), (1918). Fiction as an art has made more progress during the last hundred years than any other literary type. The first half of the nineteenth century especially developed a consciousness of subject matter and form in both the novel and the short story which has created an epoch as notable in the history of fiction as was the age of Shakespeare in the progress of the drama. In Great Britain, France, Russia, Germany, and America arose fictional artists of distinguished ability, while in other nations writers of scarcely less merit soon followed.


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