About Ricardo Blanco

Ricardo Blanco is a version or translation of poet, novelist and translator Richard Gwyn. He  grew up in Breconshire, Wales, and studied at the LSE and in countless bars, roadhouse cafés, dosshouses and A & E departments across Europe. He returned to his homeland with a different measure of sanity in 1990 and completed a PhD in Linguistics at Cardiff University, where he is now Director of the MA in Creative Writing. His books include The Colour of a Dog Running Away, Deep Hanging Out and The Vagabond’s Breakfast.

4 Responses to “About Ricardo Blanco”

  1. Carol Novack August 24, 2011 at 20:03 #

    Love your book titles!

  2. Tom Gething September 6, 2012 at 23:38 #

    Thanks for the review. I’m interested in your comment about having no desire to read novels, as I’m feeling much the same. And yet I keep going back, like to one of those bad all-you-can-eat buffet bars where the food is mediocre at best and you always leave feeling slightly sick. Is it because so few modern novels get beyond the cliched? Or because the marketing and promotions promise so much more than is ever delivered? Are our expectations too high? Conrad and Flaubert were not only supreme narrative artists striving to penetrate and transpose reality, but also interpreters of the moral issues of their times. That’s a tall order in this age of viral information and moral relativism. As a teacher of creative writing, what do you tell your students about the work they aspire to?

    • richardgwyn September 7, 2012 at 10:00 #

      Hi Tom Thanks for this comment, and your earlier one, which I failed to respond to, although that too had me thinking. I didn’t look at the blog during August as I was (ironically, in view of the last post) working on a novel. The thing about not reading novels came out of chats with friends, some of whom are violently anti-novel (which I am not). That is to say, they value the short story and poetry far more. In general terms I am inclined to agree with them, but it all comes down to specific cases in the end. I have read a few novels over the past couple of years that I value very much, though I can’t think of more than one or two that were written in English. Interpreting the moral issues of the times – or at least reflecting them – is, perhaps, something that novelists do even without consciously attempting to. Presumably Fifty Shades of Grey does this, no? It is what the novel does, even when it does it badly. As for teaching Creative Writing (a rather suspect occupation, don’t you think?) I tell my students to read as widely and indiscriminately as possible at first so as to discover their own predilections, not to be constrained by any kind of canon (but to be aware of them, at the very least). Most of all I advise them to read as much literature in translation as possible (because, contrary to what the UK/USA publishing industry seems to believe, not everything of value happens in English first) and finally I tell the fiction/prose writers to read poetry. All best Richard

      > Date: Thu, 6 Sep 2012 23:38:40 +0000 > To: richard.gwyn@hotmail.com >

      • Tom Gething September 7, 2012 at 15:51 #

        That sounds like good advice for your students. Good luck with your own novel. Cheers, Tom

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