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

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from New York Magazine

New York Magazine3 min read
No, Don’t Hoard Your Miles
IS THERE SUCH A THING AS DIRT-CHEAP LAST-MINUTE TICKETS? Not really. Years ago, airlines would slash prices shortly before a flight in order to meet capacity. Now they do the opposite: jack up the fares to nail last-minute business travelers who’ll
New York Magazine2 min read
Nine Cool Girls
INTERVIEWS BY VÉRONIQUE HYLAND Laila Gohar, chef If you could be outfitted by one designer for the rest of your life, who would it be? Ossie Clark. What was the last website you looked at?, where you order wholesale food for restaura
New York Magazine3 min read
David Lynch Is Rolling Off a Log
As Twin Peaks returns to TV, its iconic creator has a few things to say about it. Very few things, it turns out.