Fiction Responding to Fiction: D.H. Lawrence and Raymond Carver (and James Lasdun)

Among the 14 pounds of books I got from Powell’s this week are three or four pounds of DH Lawrence. I also bought the 2014 O. Henry Prize collection and a new copy of James Lasdun’s It’s Beginning to Hurt.  I studied with James in 2011 at The New School.  I did not know that James was a jurist for the 2014 O. Henry Prize, nor did I know that he wrote the introduction to one of the Lawrence collections among the three or four of my new 14 pounds.

James is a great writer and a great teacher.  It was a pleasure to find more of his work than I knew was coming.

The link below is to a piece on the similarities between Raymond Carver’s “Cathedrals” and Lawrence’s “The Blind Man” at Ploughshares. I share it here because one of the things that has encouraged me over the years is some insight James gave me on a story I’d written for his seminar.  We’d discussed the Cathedrals/Blind Man connections in class, and James asked us each to write a story in some way inspired by something we’d read and studied in class.  I went back to “The Blind Man,” among other things.

Speaking of Carver:  I think most writers are looking for a less-ambitious Gordon Lish.

From Ploughshares:

“The Fiction Responding to Fiction series considers the influence that a short story has on another writer; previous entries can be found here. Raymond Carver insisted that his iconic masterpiece….”

Source: Fiction Responding to Fiction: D.H. Lawrence and Raymond Carver

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