1. DeadMoon

    DeadMoon The light side of the dark side Contributor

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2014
    Messages:
    823
    Likes Received:
    520
    Location:
    fargo, ND

    Raymond Carver

    Discussion in 'Discussion of Published Works' started by DeadMoon, Nov 7, 2017.

    Has anyone here read much by Raymond Carver? I just recently started reading a bunch of his short stories. I like most of them but there is also a feeling at the end that left me wanting to know more of the story like there was no major obstacle or event but more of a moment in someone's life. yet, I read one after another because there is still something there, in the story that draws me in any way. anyone else gets this?
     
    Spencer1990 likes this.
  2. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2016
    Messages:
    4,644
    Likes Received:
    4,311
    Raymond Carver is one of my favorites. "Why Don't You Dance?" is probably my all time favorite short story EVER!!! If you haven't read that one, make sure you check it out. Just thinking about it makes me want to go reread it again. Raymond Carver was considered a minimalist and literary writer. Some people tend to think literary short stories don't always need or have a plot, but I disagree. In the case of Carver, I think his stories tend to be on the more quiet and subtle track, but I still see the plots. Think about the story occasions. There is a reason this story is being told about this day, this event, this hour, this moment. Thinking about the story occasion might help you identify the plots more clearly.
     
    DeadMoon and Spencer1990 like this.
  3. Spencer1990

    Spencer1990 Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2016
    Messages:
    2,513
    Likes Received:
    3,382
    I also LOVE Carver's work. I think there's a quiet brilliance to what he wrote. He has the kind of work that needs unpacking to find the depth. With his work, I find myself needing to read and re-read his stories, and each time I do, I get something new; each time, I'm struck by some subtle line of dialogue or a moment of deep characterization.

    I think what makes Carver a little difficult to unpack is his use of narrative gaps. There's a lot that you need to fill in as a reader, and I think that works to make his work more poignant. We each bring our individual perceptions to these stories and arrive at meaning.

    Viewfinder is one of those stories I'm talking about. This story is a deft hand at work. I read it when I feel stuck or need inspiration, and even though it's seldom related to what I'm working on, the force of the story gets my juices flowing.
     
    DeadMoon and deadrats like this.
  4. DeadMoon

    DeadMoon The light side of the dark side Contributor

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2014
    Messages:
    823
    Likes Received:
    520
    Location:
    fargo, ND
    "Why don't you dance" hapeed to be the first story I read of his. Right now I am reading a collection of short stories called "Will you please be quiet, Please?"
     
    deadrats likes this.
  5. DeadMoon

    DeadMoon The light side of the dark side Contributor

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2014
    Messages:
    823
    Likes Received:
    520
    Location:
    fargo, ND
    Definitely need to think more about his stories once I have read them and thats not a bad thing. I do love his subtle stlye and use of subtext. like in "Cathedral" where the narrator is talking about his wife friend, who he does not know but dose not care for, says "why should he have a name?" that one sentance alone speaks volumes.
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2017
  6. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2016
    Messages:
    4,644
    Likes Received:
    4,311
    What did you think of "Why Don't You Dance"? It's a good story, no? I don' t think it's his most well-known, but, man, I just love it. There is a great essay about this story and Carver in a book called "Object Lessons." The book was put out a few years ago by the Paris Review. At the time it was advertised as the only MFA you need or something like that I remember seeing somewhere. I don't know about all that, but it is a really great book if you want to get into some of the great short story writers. The stories in this book could be considered literary classics. The little essays on each story are written by some of today's great short-story writers, which makes it quite interesting. Really check it out if you get a chance to.

    But I would love to hear what you thought of that story. I think it's one of those love-it-or-hate-it stories. For me, I was just so moved by the whole senecio as it practically explodes with subtext. Then the ending... I won't say too much because I don't want to ruin it for anyone, but I love how Carver takes the ending in a different direction. It's not wild, but it's also not what's expected. Was this one of the stories that left you wanting more? I could see that on some level, but at the same time isn't everything there? We know what we think we know about the couple and the older man. Sure, Carver could have added backstory, but he was know for his minimalist style. And the holes in the story just sort of add to the tapestry. That's what I think. It's beautiful and it's life and it's a good story.
     
  7. DeadMoon

    DeadMoon The light side of the dark side Contributor

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2014
    Messages:
    823
    Likes Received:
    520
    Location:
    fargo, ND
    I really enjoyed the story. For me, I felt more for the girl the most, like the ending where she says "You must be desperate or something." but at the same time is not only dancing with him but pulling him closer like all sh really wants is to be loved and intimate and at that moment nothing else really matters. I'm sure theresmore to it but, for me, it was all about that singl moment.
     
    deadrats likes this.
  8. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2016
    Messages:
    4,644
    Likes Received:
    4,311
    Beautiful. I love it.

    So, were you surprised by the ending then?
     
  9. DeadMoon

    DeadMoon The light side of the dark side Contributor

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2014
    Messages:
    823
    Likes Received:
    520
    Location:
    fargo, ND
    Somewhat but again, I think the girl protests to much at the end retelling the story. more subtext there
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice