Sunday, March 15, 2009

Not Knowing

You know, Donald Barthelme once told me, in one of his books (Not Knowing,) that you can't fucking plan it.

That's fine, but then how do you get a line like "Many years later, standing in front of the firing squad, Colonel Aureliano Buendia recalled the day his father took him to discover ice," or however opens.

Not that a huge amount of that book wasn't improvised, or however you might describe unplanned writing. But Marquez himself has said he planned that thing thoroughly. So? Not knowing.

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