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lunes, 9 de julio de 2018

Gracias, Words whitout Borders

In 1927, the Uruguayan writer Horacio Quiroga—often compared to Poe for his horror stories and to Kipling for his stories of the jungle—left us his famous “Decálogo para el perfecto cuentista” (translated most frequently as “Ten Commandments for the Perfect Storyteller”). There, he offers a series of essential recommendations for anyone wishing to become an expert in the art of the short story. His list begins not with formal elements or questions of technique but rather with a call to search for a guide or mentor: “Believe in your teacher as in God himself,” he declares, and then continues to mention (in this order) his own literary gods: Poe, Maupassant, Kipling, Chekhov. With this same fervor, this faith in finding a teacher, writers in Buenos Aires seek out a writing workshop. These young writers are clearly also motivated by the belief that studying craft and process will improve their writing, but they also intuit, even without much knowledge of the literary universe into which they’re setting out, that their future as writers will largely depend on the person who runs their workshop.

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