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hemingWay of the Day: author insults

Thanks to Shelf Awareness for this interesting item today.

Recently, Flavorwire gave us The 30 Harshest Author-on-Author Insults in History. It might be worth your time to go check them all out, but I had to share with you a few of my favorites.

Numbers 15 and 14 are a back-and-forth:

15. William Faulkner on Ernest Hemingway:
“He has never been known to use a word that might send a reader to the dictionary.”

14. Ernest Hemingway on William Faulkner:
“Poor Faulkner. Does he really think big emotions come from big words?”

…to which I give an lol. My meager attempt to appreciate Faulkner was pathetic, but I blame him entirely – or maybe my choice to try The Sound and the Fury first, I don’t know. I *may* give him another try someday. If I do, it will definitely be a different title. It should go without saying that I side with Hemingway on this one, in terms of the end-result-value of their work – although it is also true, I have never used a dictionary in my readings of Hem. (I do use a dictionary when I read sometimes, though.)

I also liked this one:

9. Truman Capote on Jack Kerouac:
“That’s not writing, that’s typing.”

I think this is in the same spirit as #15, above. And again, I loved On the Road and so disagree; but the witty jab makes me smile, all the same.

There are some other clever ones there, too. I encourage you to go poke around and tell me, which ones made you smile? Or get angry? Or feel justified?

4 Responses

  1. I love the way Gertrude Stein insults Ezra Pound: “A village explainer. Excellent if you were a village, but if you were not, not.” There’s just something about the “If you were not, not” that’s so funny.

  2. That is funny. Very Stein, too.

  3. Hemingway is spot on and I love it. His writing is real, blunt, and honest – no beatin’ around the bush with him.

  4. Yay, another fan. 🙂

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