T. C. Boyle on the difference between a novel and a short story


The novel, you know what you’re gonna do tomorrow
when you wake up, however, you’re locked into it, so whatever you should tell me, or my
friends tell me, or excites me that’s happening technologically, I can’t write about. With a story, it’s the opposite. Anything that occurs to you, you can just
jam up a story. However, once the story’s over, let’s say
it takes a month from the initial idea, two weeks of the writing, a week to polish, then
you send it off, then you’re completely bereft. You don’t know what you’re gonna do tomorrow
and you have a period where you have no ideas and you twirl that gun on your desk a lot,
you know, to kinda stimulate yourself. It’s very difficult, but I think one of the
reasons I’ve been so productive is I’ve been able to go from one form to the other, back
and forth.

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