“Understated Prose: The Beauty of Conveying More with Less,” a writing craft essay by upstreet author Jay Kauffmann, appears in the December issue of The Writer’s Chronicle. The essay, a re-appreciation of literary minimalism, uses examples from Ernest Hemingway, Raymond Carver, Marguerite Duras, Kathryn Harrison and others to illustrate the techniques that characterize minimalist fiction. These techniques include the use of ordinary words, simple sentence patterns, a flat, clipped delivery, attention to surface detail, the absence of emotion, a narrow focus on sensation, and an overall tendency toward omission, compression, and economy of language.
Jay, a former international model and current writing teacher, holds an MFA from the Vermont College of Fine Arts. He was a finalist for the Howard Frank Mosher Short Fiction Prize and a nominee for Best New American Voices 2009. He currently lives in Paris with his wife and their two children, and will be the 2009 Writer-in-Residence at Randolph College in Lynchburg, VA. Jay’s short story, “In a German Garden,” will appear in the upcoming upstreet number five. We congratulate him on a fine piece of work and hope Fan Club members will take the time to enjoy this issue of the Chronicle.