Posts Tagged: vladimir nabokov

The Rumpus Mini-Interview Project #84: Susan DeFreitas

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Picture this: a curbside juggler with a rose between his teeth. That’s the opening image of Susan DeFreitas’s powerful debut novel, Hot Season. Vivid (and sometimes strange) images strike again and again, conjuring ponderosa pines, cafés, old houses, and new characters. The book is firmly set in the fictional town of Crest Top, Arizona, and […]

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The Sunday Rumpus Interview: Jericho Parms

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What is lost still has substance, is malleable, can take on new impressions, and be molded again to our experience, often resulting in the most lasting force that determines how we see the world.

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The Rumpus Interview with Jeff VanderMeer

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Jeff VanderMeer discusses the environment, his childhood, and the conception and conclusion of his Southern Reach Trilogy.

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Objects of Our Affection

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Objects make for excellent writing prompts, Anca Szilagyi declares on the Plougshares blog. Objects can ignite memories or serve as a simple writing exercise tool. And objects within a narrative define how characters interact in a world. But be warned, there are dangers: Vladimir Nabokov writes of a curious condition. Whenever he inserted objects from […]

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The Pleasure of Perfectly Positioned Punctuation

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As conscientious writers know, punctuation can make all the difference in a sentence, sculpting mush into meaning or cluing the reader in to nuances of intonation. Vulture’s Kathryn Schulz has compiled some of literature’s most effective and memorable instances of punctuation, from Nabokov’s parenthetical “(picnic, lightning)” to the ellipses in T. S. Eliot’s “The Love […]

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Nabokov vs. The Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis

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“When Nabokov started translating [his English-language memoir] into Russian, he recalled a lot of things that he did not remember when he was writing it in English, and so in essence it became a somewhat different book,” Pavlenko says. At NPR’s health blog, Shots, Alan Yu explores the controversial linguistic idea that the language(s) we […]

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The Copycat Lolita

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A few weeks before Vladimir Nabokov’s Lolita came out, the New Yorker published a short story about a man consorting with a young woman named Lolita instead of her mother—but this story was by Dorothy Parker, whose career was entering its last-gasp phase. Wait, what? Really? Vulture explains how coincidence, indiscretion, and “an opportunity to sting the current […]

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The Unreal Life of Sergey Nabokov, by Paul Russell

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Sibling rivalry takes many forms. Whether it’s Bart and Lisa Simpson choking each other in front of the television or Cain concussing his brother Abel the outcome is usually the same– someone always wins. There’s always a favorite, a golden child. But what about those who are left second best? Often the arrow that doesn’t […]

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Nabokov v. Wilson

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Vladimir Nabokov and Edmund Wilson academically quarrel in a series of letters, written to assuage the pain of illness that was afflicting them both. They’ve got a shared “literary curiosity,” but the specifics of their understanding of Western literature reveal that they mostly just disagreed. Still, witnessing the correspondence of two intelligent frenemies is worth […]

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“Writers die twice”

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“Writing remains a very interesting job, but destiny, or “fat Fate”, as Humbert Humbert calls it, has arranged a very interesting retribution. Writers lead a double life. And they die doubly, too. This is modern literature’s dirty little secret. Writers die twice: once when the body dies, and once when the talent dies.” — Martin […]

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