On Becoming a Novelist Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Who is the author of Crime and Punishment?

2. Gardner notes in Chapter 1 that all writing requires some measure of a ____ state.

3. What kind of intelligence does Gardner say is important to the writer in Chapter 1?

4. Who is the author of All the King's Men?

5. Who wrote Bartelby the Scrivener?

Short Essay Questions

1. What authors does Gardner use to illustrate language and character in Chapter 1?

2. What does Gardner assert of the author learning character through television in Chapter 1?

3. What does Gardner write about showy language in Chapter 1?

4. What does Gardner say of writers with "bad taste" in language in Chapter 1?

5. What state does good fiction elicit in the reader, according to Gardner?

6. What does Gardner remark about theme in Chapter 1?

7. What is the second indicator of talent that Gardner discusses in Chapter 1? What author does he cite in this?

8. What essential things must an aspiring author understand in order to pursue writing?

9. What hypothetical situation does Gardner uses as an example of plot in Chapter 1?

10. What does Gardner say in Chapter 1 regarding "verbal sensitivity?" What does this term mean?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the negative aspects of going for a graduate degree from a writer's workshop. What cons does Gardner cite for these programs?

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the career of Raymond Carver. How did he come to study with John Gardner? What does he relate of his experiences as Gardner's student?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss what literary dynasties are. What are some examples of literary dynasties? How does an author go about finding his own community?

(see the answer keys)

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