John Gardner, in an interview, said an editor once told him about his novel The Sunlight Dialogues, that it needed to be cut by a third. He retorted, he said, Which third?
When it was finally published, it went on to be a bestseller. I remember reading in in paperback when Gardner was recommended to me by a teacher, the novelist and short story writer Richard Bausch. It’s been a long time since I read it, but one of the things I remember about it was “the Sunlight Man” delivering long, hectoring lectures to the main character, Fred Clumly. And I remember feeling a little hectored myself, and skipping a lot of that. Continue reading