Sometimes to see how many people agree with me, I Google my opinions in quotes and see what shows up. Today, it was “Raymond Carver sucks.” This search yielded a wonderful exchange on some website.
dueserpenti: “Someday I will convince the world that Raymond Carver sucks.”
crote: “What we talk about when we talk about punching you in the dick.”
dueserpenti: “Whassat? I couldn’t hear you over the sound of a story about a man giving a lady exact change for the bus in a way that teachers her that all life is connected.”
crote: “If you don’t like reading about world weary alcoholics who are tired of life I’m not sure why you post here.”
Just another example of why the internet is awesome. dueserpenti’s first response is fantastic for anyone that’s read a little Raymond Carver and found him a little annoying.
P.S. Under the original post heading, dueserpenti posted a longer tirade that I found funny as well. Colorful opinions about short-story writers. Emphasis my own.
In college I wrote a polemic called “Raymond Carver Must Die” that became my senior thesis. Which is not to say that there aren’t writers in Carver’s genre that I enjoy; Tobias Wolff is my fucking jam, for a time at least my favorite short story writer, and I was lucky enough to get to do a workshop with him when I was at the height of my Wolffmania. But in the main, my heart belongs to more fantastical writers. Not fantasy, not ever. Fantasy is for dickbrains. I will pimp for John Kessel any day of the week; he’s a science fiction writer with the soul of a magical realist and a great sense of humor. Julio Cortazar is one of my favorite writers who ever lived. Theodore Sturgeon still doesn’t get enough love because no amount of love will ever be enough. For the ladies, Carol Emshwiller, Mary Reikert, and Kelly Link. Gosh, I don’t know; I’ve read so many short stories that I’m like an overloaded autistic. If you want to know my thoughts on short stories it’s better to pick a specific one and present your questions in bright primary colors. Better yet, find a copy of Alberto Manguel’s Black Water anthology, worship that shit (this is seriously the only thing I own that I would save in a fire), and we can talk at length about any story in there.