On Becoming a Novelist Test | Final 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. How did ancient poets get around means of survival, if not attaching themselves to kings?

2. Gardner states in Chapter 3 that a writer has to go far out of his way to turn his what against him?

3. What literary magazine does Gardner publish?

4. In Chapter 2, Gardner writes that writing, "like the study of classical piano, is not practical but _____."

5. Who is cited as the head of the writing program at Johns Hopkins and favors new and strange styles?

Short Essay Questions

1. Describe some of the qualities of bad writing workshops in Chapter 2.

2. What does Gardner say of editors in Chapter 3? What can one do to appeal to an editor?

3. Where does the author's manuscript go after he reviews the copywriter's corrections?

4. What does Gardner write of writers' workshops in Chapter 2?

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

6. What does Gardner say regarding the study of philosophy and psychology?

7. Why is writing usually rejected, according to Gardner?

8. What brings the author feelings of virtue in Chapter 2?

9. What does Gardner cite as the assets of having an agent in Chapter 3?

10. What does Gardner write of the standard technique of teaching writing in Chapter 2?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

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 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

Discuss the exceptions that Gardner makes in reference to James Joyce, Franz Kafka, and Samuel Beckett. What in their writing differs from the traditional and still "works"?

(see the answer keys)

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