'George Saunders develops the acronym TICHN — things I couldn’t help noticing. In other words, referring back to his advice ‘Don’t say something for no reason’; if you include a detail, make sure it means something, and repeat it, with subtle variations. '
Lydia Syson reflects on the particular kinds of truth that fiction can reveal, considers the radical history of her maternal forebears, and puts the case for novel-reading as an essential element of historical research in ‘The Evidence of Fiction’.
'Now I didn't need him to read to me anymore, that our sitting down side by side, and his joy in reading to me, was ended; guilt then, infests my reading habits from their beginning.'
'If I there is a guiding principle behind my reading — let's call it a 'tendency' — it's the idea of The Canon. I've been working on The Canon since I was at school.'