"One day, the writer would recognize the near simultaneity of connected but dissimilar momentous events - these are what move a story forward - but at the moment Danny lost consciousness in Carmella's sweet-smelling arms, the exhausted boy had merely been thinking: How coincidental is this? (He was too young to know that, in any novel with a reasonable amount of forethought, there were no coincidences.)" - from Last Night in Twisted River
John Irving wrote that, a writer who once wrote my favorite book (A Prayer for Owen Meany). A writer who has said something to the effect of, I don't write well, but I rewrite well. Makes me wonder what the first draft looked like.
Other flinch-worthy moments include writing Italian accents like they were written for 60's pizza commercials: "Say-a no more, Dominic - we don't-a need to know why, or who you're running from!" and awkward race distinctions like this (contrasting an Italian with a Native American): "Her olive-brown skin was not unlike Jane's reddish-brown coloring; her slightly flattened nose and broad cheekbones were the same, as were her dark-brown eyes - like Jane's, Carmella's eyes were almost as black as her hair." Reddish-brown coloring? Really? 'Cause she's an injun?
Really? Really, John Irving? I'm still going to finish it. It's still John Irving.