Brad Gooch -->

For a writer of semi-autobiographical fiction, Flannery O’Connor maintained a complex relationship between her real life and her work. When she left the United States for the first time to make the Lourdes Centennial Pilgrimage, she told her cousin she would write about the trip when the “reality had somewhat faded.” For great writers, the act of creation often trumps the experience of the real world. “At the point where you get your writerly vocation,” John Updike said, “you diminish your receptivity to experience.” O’Connor went so far as to say “experience is the greatest deterrent to fiction.” In his recent biography, Flannery: A Life of Flannery O’Connor, Brad Gooch artfully brings them together.

Flannery O’Connor...

 
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