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Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Penetrated, layered, and revealing

“A story is a kind of biopsy of human life. A story is both local, specific, small, and deep, in a kind of penetrating, layered, and revealing way.” – Lorrie Moore

Marie Lorena Moore, born on this date in 1957, is an American fiction writer known mainly for her humorous and poignant short stories, including her New York Times bestseller Birds of America. 

Moore started writing in the mid-1980s while a grad student at Cornell and her first story "You're Ugly, Too" (published in The New Yorker) was later included in The Best American Short Stories of the Century, edited by novelist John Updike.  Moore won the 1998 O. Henry Award for her short story "People Like That Are the Only People Here," about a sick child and loosely based on events in her own life.

At one point in life she also thought about being a dancer.  But, of course, writing interfered.  “To me," she said, “writing is much freer than dancing. With writing, you could do it whenever you 
                                 wanted.  You didn't have to do little exercises and stay in shape. You could have great moments of inspiration that advanced the story. In dance, unless you're going to choreograph things yourself, you're at the service of someone else.

“Writing has to be an obsession - it's only for those who say, 'I'm not going to do anything else.'”

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