Every week, the editors of The Paris Review lift the paywall on a selection of interviews, stories, poems, and more from the magazine’s archive. You can have these unlocked pieces delivered straight to your inbox every Sunday by signing up for the Redux newsletter.
This week, we’re looking at some of the writers whom both The Paris Review and BOMB Magazine have published in the past. Read on for George Saunders’s Art of Fiction interview, Renee Gladman’s essay “Five Things,” and Cathy Park Hong’s poem “Happy Days.”
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George Saunders, The Art of Fiction No. 245
Issue no. 231 (Winter 2019)
My view of myself is that I came in through the basement window of literature. I’m not well educated or well read enough to do things correctly, and when I write what seems to me a “correct” story, it’s got low energy and isn’t true to my experience. Somehow the story and the language have to be a little messy or low. I love the idea of pushing an idea through a too-small linguistic opening—that feeling of overflow. I love the idea that the passion contained in a story is so great that it fucks up the form and makes it unseemly and impolite.