Sunday, December 02, 2007

Carver and Lish

Interesting article in yesterday's Guardian by James Campbell about editors changing the works of their authors, sometimes dramatically. It gives a good account of the Raymond Carver/Gordon Lish case. There's nothing new in it, but it covers the ground well.

His conclusion is pretty sound - that we tinker with stories at our peril. They exist in our collective consciousness and to change them - as would be the way in a restored version of Carver's "One more thing", where the ending is totally different and much less effective - is to meddle with, in Campbell's phrase, "the imagination of the readers".

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