Writers have after-lives, lived out in what happens to their unfinished manuscripts. From Weir of Hermiston and Edwin Drood to Nabokov’s The Original of Laura, Keith Tutt wonders what might have been.
Martina Evans kept starting novels only to find that they turned into poems and diagnosed in herself a resistance to narrative extension. She taught fiction and wrote poetry: bored with the padding of novels, she felt only poems tunnelled into the seam where memory meets the unconscious. Here she offers a passionate defence of the shorter form.