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Friday, April 5 • 11:45am - 1:00pm
2C: The Big Reveal, or Not: Sustaining Uncertainty in Fiction FULL
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What is the difference between crafting surprise and forcing it? When we talk about sustaining uncertainty in fiction, we often mean maintaining suspense for the reader, or posing questions to keep the audience engaged. But sustaining uncertainty about what *characters will ultimately risk or lose* gets to deeper questions about what's at stake in the story.

In a time of unprecedented political upheaval, uncertainty both in life and fiction are ever-present contemporary questions. But it can be tricky to figure out when withholding information is and isn't working. To provide some examples of magnificently sustained uncertainty, we'll look at excerpts from Hernan Diaz's In the Distance, Samanta Schweblin's Fever Dream, and R.O. Kwon's The Incendiaries. Novey may also read from Those Who Knew, and discuss trying to sustain her own uncertainty about several key aspects of the plot.

avatar for Idra Novey

Idra Novey

Idra Novey is the author of the novel Those Who Knew, a 2018 Indie Next Pick, and Ways to Disappear, winner of the 2017 Sami Rohr Prize, the 2016 Brooklyn Eagles Prize, and a finalist for the LA Times Book Prize for First Fiction. She's translated four books from Spanish and Portuguese... Read More →

Friday April 5, 2019 11:45am - 1:00pm EDT
Cambridge Room - 4th Floor