George Saunders in Mankato

Tomorrow is a really big day.  George Saunders, great story and essay writer, is doing The Good Thunder Reading Series. (Look at the list of authors from this year! Chaon, Henley, Komunyakaa, Reif Larsen, whoa — I’ve eaten Chinese Food with lots of people I like to read.)  George Saunders is visiting my department.  I’ll be eating some Chinese Food with George Saunders.  I’m pretty psyched up.  Why?

George Saunders compares the techniques writers use to build tension in a story to a Hot Wheels rubber ball spinning gas station that flings a Hot Wheels car around a Hot Wheels track.  The car in the comparison is the reader.  He suggests good stories fling readers (sometimes off the track and into your sister’s face).  Saunders conjectures, not without sort of questioning himself, wondering if he’s an idiot, that Serious Fun could save the world — he’s been at a waterpark in Dubai.  Saunders watches President Clinton take pictures with a British family in Africa, watches Clinton bend way down to be at the same level as the short kid, and understands the Clinton Genius.  Saunders writes the funniest short stories.  Saunders writes longing essays filled with kindness.  Saunders uses just great, down-on-the-ground, American diction while poking his finger into high philosophical pie. I like George Saunders.


A huge reason to apply to Mankato’s MFA program: Good Thunder.  You might get to eat Chinese food with George Saunders.

Chinese Food


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I am…

Geoff Herbach. I am the author of Stupid Fast and Nothing Special, among a bunch of other stuff. When I'm not writing, I teach writing at Minnesota State, Mankato.

Stupid Fast

Nothing Special

I’m With Stupid

Fat Boy (Gabe Johnson Takes Over)

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