Category Archives: use of surprise in fiction

Of Horses, Humans, and Healing

Of course, it’s not only horses; it’s most animals that respond to human attention, nurture, and love on what is very much a two-way street. I wrote about my beautiful therapy Labrador retriever, Hannah, in Where The Trail Grows Faint, a memoir of her antics while she and I worked in a nursing home at… Continue Reading

On Control

I love control.  If everyone—including my dog—would only do what I tell them, it would put the fun back in dysfunctional and (my) life would go so much more smoothly.  Let’s include objects too, so my computer would stop being a butthead.  Ditto my iphone 5s, and Siri, who clearly has a learning problem.  Oh, it… Continue Reading

On Zusak, Gadhafi and Surprise

An unexpected ludicrous moment, a twist into tragedy, a flash of tenderness:  surprise by a character is a crucial element of a riveting story.  Speaking yesterday at the College of Mount Saint Joseph in Cincinnati, Ohio, Marcus  Zusak discussed this as well as describing how he wrote multiple drafts of The Book Thief, trying out different narrators as he worked to understand… Continue Reading

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