How to Become a Writer

by

Lorrie Moore

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Francie’s Brother Character Analysis

Francie’s brother serves in the military as a soldier in the Vietnam War. He returns with severe injuries when Francie is in college. Though it’s unclear how close Francie and her brother are to each other, Francie’s inability to write about her brother or his injuries implies that he once represented a sense of stability in her life, and when his life is threatened, that stability vanishes. In effect, his injuries reveal to Francie the volatility of the world around her.

Francie’s Brother Quotes in How to Become a Writer

The How to Become a Writer quotes below are all either spoken by Francie’s Brother or refer to Francie’s Brother. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Creativity and Perseverance  Theme Icon
).
How to Become a Writer Quotes

About the second you write an elaborate story of an old married couple who stumble upon an unknown land mine in their kitchen and accidentally blow themselves up. You call it: “For Better or for Liverwurst.”

About the last you write nothing. There are no words for this. Your typewriter hums. You can find no words.

Related Symbols: Explosions
Page Number: 123-124
Explanation and Analysis:
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Francie’s Brother Character Timeline in How to Become a Writer

The timeline below shows where the character Francie’s Brother appears in How to Become a Writer. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
How to Become a Writer
Creativity and Perseverance  Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Isolation Theme Icon
...shows the poems to her mom who, she notes, has a son in Vietnam (Francie’s brother) and a husband (Francie’s father) who might be having an affair. Instead of commenting on... (full context)
Creativity and Perseverance  Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Isolation Theme Icon
...asks herself questions like “Why write?” and “If there’s a God, then why is my brother now a cripple?” Her new writing professor is obsessed with the imagination and encourages the... (full context)
Creativity and Perseverance  Theme Icon
Violence, Trauma, and Isolation Theme Icon
Sex vs. Love Theme Icon
...years of her life: she lost her virginity, her parents got a divorce, and her brother came back from war with permanent scars. She writes a straightforward story about losing her... (full context)