This piece by Megan Marz at Real Life references a lot of (contemporary, literary?) fiction that I’m completely unfamiliar with, but in the context of a phenomenon I am more familiar with, and very interested in, as both a writer and a human being: the slipperiness and perpetual redefinition of the word story. The whole thing is well worth a read, even if you too are woefully under-read in the burgeoning field of autofiction* , as I am. This wonderful sentence is basically a summation of the whole thing, though, and is the bit I’d pullquote and tweet if I was still doing the birdsite:
“Story” is the story that writers tell about what they’re moving toward or away from.
[ * Most of this stuff, I’ll be honest, sounds dull as ditchwater to me in the summaries I encounter, despite my own keen interest in the demolition, subversion or abandonment of plot in written fiction. I also feel uncomfortable about feeling that way, because the demography of the genre suggests it may be a form of internalised misogyny on my part. Maybe I should write an autofictional piece about Some Guy who feels uncomfortable about not wanting to read autofiction because it sounds incredibly tedious? Strictly ironic, of course… but then irony’s as dead as narrative, they tell me. It’s lucky no one much really cares what I think, innit? ]