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Black Lamb

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Now in its 14th year of publication, this magazine was created to offer the discerning reader a stimulating selection of excellent original writing. Black Lamb Review is a literate rather than a literary publication. Regular columns by writers in a variety of geographic locations and vocations are supplemented by features, reviews, articles on books and authors, and a selection of “departments,” including an acerbic advice column and a lamb recipe.

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A Week in Literary History

May 25th, 2002

American short story writer Raymond Carver (Will You Please Be Quiet, Please?, 1975) is born in Clatskanie, Ore., in 1938.

carverblueRaymond Carver, b. May 25, 1938, d. 1988

Before his death at fifty of lung cancer, Carver had become the most famous and talked about writer of short stories in America. His earliest stories, florid and full of people talking about “feelings,” were distilled by editor Gordon Lish, and the style that Carver eventually developed — laconic, flat, and menacing — was all the rage in the Seventies and Eighties. But a little Carver goes a long way. The admirable simplicity of the writing can’t make up for the emptiness of the characters, a collection of deadbeats, minor criminals, alcoholics, and losers whose lives are not really worth thinking about. The Carver imitators made American writing a pretty sad affair for twenty years, and his baleful influence is with us still.

Suggested Reading Short stories Put Yourself in My Shoes, 1974. Will You Please Be Quiet, Please?, 1976. What We Talk About When We Talk About Love, 1981.

Posted by: The Editors
Category: A Week in Literary History, Books and Authors | Link to this Entry

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