In this chapter from his classic instructive handbook, The Art of Fiction, John Gardner illustrates the principles and techniques of good writing. Poor diction, confusing clauses, undue sentimentality and mannerism—these are pitfalls that plague experienced writers as well as those new to the craft. Exemplified with detailed excerpts from classic works of literature, Gardner explores how to achieve vivid, sensuous prose and how to avoid clumsy writing. All those who aspire to learn how to master the craft of fiction will be wise to begin with Gardner’s invaluable advice.
John Gardner received wide acclaim for his novels, his collections of short stories, and his critical works. He was born in Batavia, New York, in 1933, and taught English, Anglo-Saxon, and creative writing at Oberlin College, Chico State College, San… More about John Gardner