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Night Writer

Elizabeth Cox's stories often came to her in dreams. "I'm getting up in the middle of the night and writing them down," she once declared. "And one story, I dreamed 'whole': a boy in a wheelchair and a man in prison. And I got the whole story. And right before I woke up, a voice in the dream said, 'This is from Chekov.'"

["Now is that pretentious or what?" Cox once admitted. "I'm gonna need a little more help from Anton in order to finish it."]

[Cox often attempted to dissuade her students from harboring unrealistic dreams of writing for a living. "I failed one student at Duke

[University]. His mother called me and said, 'He doesn't usually fail. He's a good student, and he wants to be a writer.' I said, "Yes he wants to be a writer, but he doesn't want to do the hard work of writing. And he doesn't want to revise, and if we tell him anything, he doesn't like to hear he doesn't come back.'" The mother's reply? "I think," she said after a long pause, "he needs to work at McDonald's."]

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