“We all have our little preferences and prejudices,” says Chuck Palahniuk, author of 20 novels, including Fight Club, Choke, and Beautiful You. This spring, he publishes Adjustment Day, his first novel in four years. “I, for example, vow never to resolve a plot by having a character commit suicide. In my opinion, the most noble goal of any story is to depict a character facing the readers’ worst fear, better yet a fear that outstrips their worst-case scenarios, then show the character in question enduring the challenge."
He continues, "In fact, 99 percent of writing—like 99 percent of the insurance industry and organized religions—involves informing innocent people of hideous, painful, humiliating possibilities beyond their wildest imagination, then selling those same people the hope of salvation. Therein lies my secret hypocrisy: I adore films in which the hero finds salvation through self-murder. My own novel Fight Club resolves with an apparent-but-not-quite martyrdom. What follows is by no means a complete list, but to date, they constitute my favorites."
Without further ado, here they are in reverse order.