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Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Ray Bradbury on literary influences

"Eudora Welty... has the remarkable ability to give you atmosphere, character, and motion in a single line. In one line! You must study these things to be a good writer. Welty would have a woman simply come into a room and look around. In one sweep she gave you the feel of the room, the sense of the woman’s character, and the action itself. All in twenty words. And you say, How’d she do that? What adjective? What verb? What noun? How did she select them and put them together? I was an intense student. Sometimes I’d get an old copy of [Thomas] Wolfe and cut out paragraphs and paste them in my story, because I couldn’t do it....  I’d retype whole sections of other people’s novels just to see how it felt coming out. Learn their rhythm. "
-- Ray Bradbury from a Paris Review interview 

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