When I read, I want the familiar to be “made strange”; I want the mundane to appear magical. What I’m seeking is not a new world, but new eyes. And although I may have misappropriated a term from the Russian Formalists (or was it the Romantics?), I don’t find the Formalist consideration of texts (or sentences, for that matter) as self-contained units to be preferable, or even possible. If you want to experience the full impact of these excerpts, you must seek out the full text and consider the work within its larger cultural and temporal context.
Theory aside, we all know that many great sentences do not necessarily add up to a great story, but I will leave the task of evaluation and interpretation to others. In this blog, my goal is neither to summarize, analyze, nor theorize. I simply wish to share the sentences that have moved me as a reader and as a writer. It’s my hope that these sentences will do the same for you.