Monday, August 1

In Defense of Genre

In A Genre Writer Accepts Himself, Will Lavender writes:

There is a war against popularity in many MFA programs in America, and in my 20s, I was on the front lines. I wrote literary fiction, the only work serious and relevant enough to be worth my time. I cut my blue jeans off at the knees and called everything ironic. I read John Banville's "The Sea" by an actual sea. I wrote the kinds of hard-bitten, muscular novelettes young men are supposed to become famous for writing.
In those first thrillers I read, I actually found a common bond to the experimental writers I'd once mimicked; in some of these books -- Abrahams' "Oblivion" is certainly one -- the writer looks to unmoor the very literary style he has invoked. Abrahams' novel is a detective novel, but it is one that slowly becomes unhinged; it is Raymond Chandler held up to a fogged, cracked glass.

If Lavender's books -- Obedience and Dominance -- are as interesting and well written as this article, then I think they would be well worth a read.

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