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"Of all the myriad pronouncements on writing, the truest one, for me, is something the poet Robert Kelly said: ‘Craft is perfected attention.’
Only a poet could have written that, but it is just as applicable to writing fiction. To pay attention, in the fullest sense, is the most exhilarating activity I know of, an experience of total aliveness. Yet to sustain it for more than short periods is very difficult, at least for me. And to attain ‘perfected attention’ usually requires endless rewriting (re-attending). I also love Randall Jarrell's definition of a novel: ‘a prose narrative of a certain length that has something wrong with it.’"
—Evelyn Toynton, author of The Oriental Wife (Other Press, 2011)