Mud Is Mud: Ongoing Notes Toward An Essay On The Art Of Fiction

Clarity is not accessibility.

Accessibility is not simplistic.

Brevity isn’t minimalism.

Oblique is often too much distance.

Less is not always more.

Excess is not experimental.

One room needs to be in relation to the next.

Quantity is not quality.

Distillation takes time.

Ideas in abundance are not enough.

Murky is not mysterious.

Language isn’t firm.

Words aren’t sentences.

A language event is not story but a story requires both event and language.

Under genius one discovers structure.

A paragraph should mean something.

There is no detail too small.

Difficult is more often undercooked.

Action leads to action in language doesn’t mean slapstick or stock.

A meander can have force and intention.

One aside should lead to another.

An end is more often a pause.

Mud is mud is mud.

–Sina Queyras

Originally published on lemonhound on July 29, 2011. An earlier version also appeared as a chapbook with No Press, thanks derek beaulieu. Image Super-Kamiokande Nutrino Observatory.

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