Re: RARA-AVIS: Copy Cats, Evolution, Revisionary Aesthetics

From: Mark Sullivan (
Date: 02 Sep 2000

Doug quoted:

"I learned to write a novelette on one of yours....I made an extremely detailed synopsis of your story and from that rewrote it...etc.
--Chandler to Gardner"

I'll add:

"When John D. MacDonald goes stale, he props open somebody else's book and starts copy typing. After a few paragraphs or pages, he finds himself changing a word here and a phrase there, improving what he's copying. Pretty soon he's ready to get back to work on something of his own."

Lawrence Block, from Writing the Novel


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