Raymond Carver

Raymond Carver has a unique ability to make you care, deeply, about the smallest glimpses into someone’s life. It could be the moment that a husband pushes his wife through a window or just three couples at a dinner party discussing what it really means to love someone – you will become invested. His short story collection, “What We Talk About When We Talk About Love” is the book that first made me feel that I could be a writer. They are stories with short timelines that exist as character-driven stories with deep insights into the interactions between people. Every stir of a glass or placement of a hand holds a deep significance. Carver’s amazing skills of observation are evident throughout these stories in which the intricacies of human behavior are put under a blinding spotlight. The film “Birdman” revolves around a play that is based off one of Carver’s short stories. The insanity that the main actor dissolves into throughout the film is a reflection of the underlying madness that ruminates in all of Carver’s stories. His cuts to scene versus summary are genius and give the best focus on what the characters see as important. What little action there is, gets buried in the dialogue-heavy stories to more importantly reveal the character drive behind these actions. His essay, “On Writing” is a clear insight into his thoughts behind his own writing and his value in stylistic integrity. Any fan of stories that get to the point with scape-like precision will enjoy his work.

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