In the creative writing classes I teach, scene often becomes an early point of emphasis, especially when it applies to fiction. Hemingway’s classic “Hills Like White Elephants” stands as an exemplar, as the brief story relies on little more than setting and dialogue. According to Nancy Pagh, author of the thoughtfully written “Write Moves: A Creative Writing Guide and Anthology,” scene “can be as forceful as an explosion at a fireworks factory or as subtle as a lover’s eye contact shifting slightly away… creat(ing) the impression we’re there, experiencing what happens through our senses. This is ‘showing.’” In his latest, the Mary McCarthy Prize winning collection of 18 short-stories, “Impossible Children” (Sarabande Books), novelist Robert Yune clearly gets this, using place and well-rendered, self-aware characters to great effect, making for some of the most compelling reading I’ve done in a while.
Special thanks to Fred Shaw for this lovely review. Really missing my friends and the special literary community in Pittsburgh this evening.