New York Magazine

How Much Does It Matter, Anyway?

FOR 60-PLUS YEARS, the Paris Review has asked writers just what they do every day. Judging from the excerpts below, a whole lot of them spend their time thinking—and arguing—about plot.

John Gardner: “I think no novel can please for very long without plot as the center of its argument. We get too many books full of meaning by innuendo.”

John Cheever: “Plot implies narrative and a lot of crap. It is a calculated attempt to

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