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The Playwrights Forum > The Art & Craft of Writing > Work-in-Progress > Books: SUBTEXT and BURNING DOWN THE HOUSE

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 Posted: Tue Feb 21st, 2012 04:03 pm
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katoagogo
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Joined: Fri Jun 16th, 2006
Location: New London, Connecticut USA
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I am in the midst of reading two really great books on writing, both by Charles Baxter.

The Art of SUBTEXT is a great fast read on the subject of what is understood when not said, how to identify it, and how to employ it in your writing. I have been reading a lot of new plays for a theater recently, and I have to say that most of the ones that end up in the rejection pile are there because of too much on-the-nose theme pointing and exposition. The unsaid and unstated are much stronger than the obvious or explained. This book develops an understanding and a vocabulary to observe subtext.

The second book is Burning Down the House - a collection of essays primarily from the 1980's, with a newer edition that contains a new preface by the author and two additional essays. This book came to my attention thru a blog that had been circulating on Facebook that references some of the observations on these essays --
Burning Down A House by Polly Carl
http://www.howlround.com/burning-down-a-house-by-polly-carl/

I thought I would share this info here. Check out the blog by Polly Carl, and perhaps you will be as intrigued as I was to find out more.

--kato

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