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. What name does Gardner assign to the teenage daughter whose unknown father moves next door in Chapter 1?

2. Who is one of the writers Gardner notes in Chapter 1 as having both a fine ear for language and also a fascination with the materials?

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

4. What story of Robert Penn Warren's did Raymond Carver read in Gardner's class at Chico State College?

5. Who is the author of Death in Venice?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Gardner say of supporting oneself as a writer in Chapter 3?

2. What is the "moronic setup" that Gardner relates in Chapter 1?

3. Why must a teacher avoid projecting their aesthetic view on writers?

4. What should the successful teacher do for his writing students, according to Gardner?

5. What is addictive of the "magic moment" to the writer in Chapter 4?

6. How does Gardner suggest outlining in the beginning of a novel in Chapter 4?

7. What does Gardner say of finding support for the author in Chapter 3?

8. In Chapter 1, what does Gardner say the most common question of the aspiring writer is to him? What is the response?

9. How does the young author learn technique through reading others?

10. What are Gardner's workshops like for writers?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Discuss what Gardner refers to as "special intelligence" in the writer. How does Gardner's definition of intelligence differ from the dictionary definition?

Essay Topic 2

What does Gardner write about the sense of perception and the ability of writers to create characters unlike themselves? What authors does he remark are excellent at this task?

Essay Topic 3

Describe the roles of plot, setting, and character in a novel. Which is the most important to Gardner? Why?

(see the answer keys)

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