Doing Things Differently

Something that makes me sad is how hard it is to write experimental literature in a way that actually works. I want to enjoy weird experimental novels that push the boundaries of form (etc etc), but in practice I don't.

I think the reason is that if you're reading something experimental, the form becomes so foregrounded, and it's hard to sink into the story itself.

When you're reading a "normal" story, the form is invisible, and you can just experience the story itself. This can be true even if the story is pretty badly written; it's rare, though possible, to read prose so bad that it takes you out of the experience.

The sad part is that I think there are forms and norms which would be wonderful to read if we could just get used to them, and then learn to ignore them. But there's no clear way to get from here to there: since they're not currently enjoyable to read, there's no way to get enough people to coalesce for long enough on a particular new form to get it to the point of becoming enjoyably invisible.

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