concept to publication

Joyce Carol Oates on creating characters in fiction

Ms. Oates, rambling a bit, reveals that during “the first six weeks” of a writing project she is quite miserable. This is somewhat surprising to me, because I find beginnings exhilarating but bog down in the middles. Maybe she is working out the difficulties earlier on, and that accounts for how prolific she manages to be.


Book publishing debut — at 96


Reading tomorrow at Litquake


  1. DMS

    As strictly a reader, I find such information fascinating.

  2. Oates gave a talk last June on The Grave Digger’s Daughter. She said that novelists have to keep trying, learn from their mistakes, and hope. If you would like to see a write up of her talk, check out TheBayAreaIntellect.

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