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Category Archive for 'Georges-Olivier Châteaureynaud'

This semester I’ve been learning not only how to write, but how to live. Sure, there have been a lot of great metaphors, similes, and stories that exemplify what I wish I could write. Millhauser has a way with endings, which are the most infuriating portion of any story I’ve ever attempted to write. Johnson […]

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There is also a third way, which is the one I like best. That’s when you can stop for a moment, midway along the path, and turn your head in both directions: toward the other town, which shimmers through the thick branches of oak and pine, and toward our town, almost obscured by the woods […]

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Another Story

This is a great way to end this book. This last story really made me realize what we’ve been studying all semester. At first, I had no idea where the story was going, my first thought was “Where can the author take this to make it fantastic or to make it different from any other […]

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  “Have you forgotten your Homer? My present will refresh your memory. But the aoidos was mistaken, like every poet who’s tried to write about mermaids. Their song isn’t meant to draw men, but males of their species, undines (228).” Before reading Georges-Olivier Châteaureynaud’s “Another Story,” I’d only ever encountered sirens who were type cast […]

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Nostalgia

To ensure he might never again suffer so nightmarish a feeling, he forbade henceforth any change, be it even in the tiniest detail, to the city. It could of course grow, and maintaining it would always be a sacred duty, but what already was would forever so remain, enjoying inalienable rights and total precedence over […]

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She was a building super. A guardian super. A fairy godsuper. Even something of a mer-super, maybe, the way her fragrant basement apartment, bathed in the blue glow and reaching back into the building depths, reminded him so much of a marine grotto carved out by tides at the foot of a city block. That […]

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Case Sensitive

What was the proper demeanor to assume in an elevator with the mummy of a young woman in one’s arms? I reached the eighth floor without finding an answer to this no doubt frivolous question. I’ve learned by now that whenever Chateaureynaud asks a leading question or dismisses something as unimportant, the reader should pay […]

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After reading more than half of the stories in Georges-Olivier Châteaureynaud’s A Life on Paper, I have begun to recognize certain patterns and similarities in the personalities of his characters and the constantly shifting realities in his stories. For example, most of the characters are average Joes with seemingly average lives until something fantastic occurs […]

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Loose Ends

Some people never wonder what they were put on earth to do. When the time comes, a voice pipes up inside and says, be a linguist, or a bridgebuilder. The voice speaks; they listen. The earlier it speaks, the earlier they set out in search of dialects to master or rivers to ford.  Moe had found out […]

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He no longer had time for anything. Wasn’t he exempt from all responsibility? The living could struggle with life, he was but a dotted outline now, barely even there.  After all, who cared about him? I’ve garnered a particular interest in this story, as I feel it embodies a style of narration that is clearly […]

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The Abyss

“It was one thing to know what abyss we were all drifting toward, and another to see ourselves sinking there through letters, documents, photos, and objects testifying to our decline.” -“The Bronze Schoolboy” “He relived their games on the edge of the abyss. It could’ve been yesterday. It was. Ten years, twenty, the blink of […]

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Rats

“You…rats, you’re life itself, you’re hope! The rest of us,” – he waved wearily to include his sumptuous office, that of the Duke of Scriblerus – “the rest of us manage but dust and death.” Chateaureynaud’s “A City of Museums” is an interesting meditation on art and memory. It’s a shock for the reader and […]

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Suicide booths

In “Écorcheville,” the fantastic element is the atmosphere. This town is a place where automated firing squads cause only a bit of gossip rather than a major public outcry and the arrest of the installer. The gossip isn’t even about the societal implications of coin-operated death, but rather about the practicality of the business plan. […]

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Hi everyone, I found a great source that has numerous podcasts in which stories of the fantastic are read. I used it last night to listen to “The Beautiful Coalwoman,” by Georges-Olivier Châteaureynaud, read by Wilson Fowlie of The Maple Leaf Singers. The website is www.podcastle.org

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” Maxence, who wanted only to crawl off to sleep, straightened in his drunken and, as best he could, assumed the air of a great lover hearing tell of a legendary lonely lady (129).” At first glance, Georges-Olivier Châteaureynaud’s “The Beautiful Coalwoman” was very similar to Arthurian legend or one of Grimm’s fairy tales in […]

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He arrived one night on horseback. He dismounted, or fell off, more like; happens to all of them, after ten long hours in the saddle through dune, marsh, and peat bog. Whether you’re a gypsy making a trip to the town of Macondo in One Hundred Years of Solitude or the famous man visiting the […]

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“I can attest to the fact that no one laughed at my burial, and that everything went according to custom, in tasteful gloom.” If you looked up gallows humor in the dictionary, you might find “The Styx” by Chateaureynaud. I really appreciated the humor in this story. At the beginning of the semester, JGB cautioned […]

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I really loved both of these stories, “La Tête” in particular. They were both extremely compelling, wonderfully strange–even disgusting at times–and so short an bizarrely sweet. I can’t quite put my finger on it… Perhaps it’s just that I really appreciate the common structural values that they both share. They both have a brevity and directness to them; one […]

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I suspected that Raymann had died without knowing anything about his broker’s secrets. The idea that the same thing might happen to me was intolerable. I brooded over this entire days at a time in my shop… yet my entire temperament as an antique dealer urged me to discover what he hid from me. In […]

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Lonely people write. I myself began a novel after every break-up, only to abandon it joyously each time I found a new companion. The human heart is a vase filled with humors and tears. One good blow, and out splash its contents. Neglect it, and it rots; parasites proliferate, spin out their filaments, mount an […]

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