He is seen by many to be one of the most important and influential American short story writers. For me, Carver’s short stories showed me how writing can be architecture, in that it can be both beautifully organic and at the same time clinically measured, restrained. In The Art of Fiction, No. 76, Carver talks about his own writing process, his drinking stage and the impact of drinking on his life, but he also talks about that thing that used to get him going – the first sentence. His writing habits, Carver explained, were either all out or nothing, when he wrote, he wrote as much as he could, and when there was no inspiration, he would wait for it to arrive. The revealing, personal interview has something for everyone, whether you are a Carver fan or not.

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