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Authors: Iain Crichton Smith

In the Middle of the Wood (26 page)

BOOK: In the Middle of the Wood
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Goodbye, Mr Dixon
http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00VIGXRLO
The titular Mr Dixon is not the novel's main character but the creation of the novel's main character, Tom Spence. Spence describes himself as “an embryo novelist”; he has had the odd job – for example, delivering mail – but is largely without skills and has bet all on his career as a writer. Unfortunately he has “never brought a novel to a successful conclusion” never mind had one published, and, unable to live the dream, has instead dreamed it through his protagonist, Drew Dixon. His novel has ground to a halt because he has decided Dixon will “meet a girl of twenty-five or thereabouts whose entry into his world was to change his life” but has no idea how to write it.

Fortuitously he meets a young woman, Ann, and, as their relationship develops we begin to sense that it will be Spence's life that is changed rather than Dixon's. As Spence's isolation ends he revisits his past, attempting to contact the mother he hasn't seen in years and returning to his old school to see the English teacher who he believes encouraged him to write. Increasingly his admiration for Dixon turns to hatred and Spence is forced to choose between life and art.

The Black Halo
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Although best known as one of Scotland's greatest modern poets, Iain Crichton Smith was also prolific as a writer of short stories. These pieces form a central part of his oeuvre, demonstrating the full range and versatility of his literary talent. From humour to tragedy, from inner monologues to extrovert surrealism, the diversity of his writing indicates the extraordinary range of his own reading and mental world. Crichton Smith wrote short stories throughout his life. Some are fragments, others almost novellas, and the best of them all show him to be an author of unique sensitivity and intelligence. These two collections, comprising the complete English stories, include over 45 stories never before published in book form, as well as others that have been out of print for many years, thus making it possible to judge Crichton Smith's achievement as a writer in full. Incorporates stories from The Hermit, Murdo, Mr Trill in Hades and Selected Stories.

The Red Door
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Although best known as one of Scotland's greatest modern poets, Iain Crichton Smith was also prolific as a writer of short stories. These pieces form a central part of his oeuvre, demonstrating the full range and versatility of his literary talent. From humour to tragedy, from inner monologues to extrovert surrealism, the diversity of his writing indicates the extraordinary range of his own reading and mental world. Crichton Smith wrote short stories throughout his life. Some are fragments, others almost novellas, and the best of them all show him to be an author of unique sensitivity and intelligence. These two collections, comprising the complete English stories, include over 45 stories never before published in book form, as well as others that have been out of print for many years, thus making it possible to judge Crichton Smith's achievement as a writer in full. Incorporates stories from Survival Without Error, The Black and the Red and The Village.

BOOK: In the Middle of the Wood
11.99Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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