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Pickle Me This

November 5, 2008

The only character who really gets to talk

(Via The Pop Triad) Lionel Shriver on quotation marks and why their absence is off-putting: “The appearance of authorial self-involvement in much modern literary fiction puts off what might otherwise comprise a larger audience. By stifling the action of speech, by burying characters’ verbal conflicts within a blurred, all-encompassing über-voice, the author does not seem to believe in action — and many readers are already frustrated with literary fiction’s paucity of plot. When dialogue makes no sound, the only character who really gets to talk is the writer.”

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