And so it arrives. The moment when the long-haul traveler realizes that she could be from the place she currently lives. Relationships have demonstrated the potential to be real and lasting. As much if not more so than those in x, y, and z places from before. This moment doesn’t always arrive. Some places just aren’t meant to be for a variety of reasons, mostly coincidence and timing. But most places might as well be home.
This is the first installment in what I hope will be a long and fruitful set of discussions with writers who are are engaged in the wonderful yet daunting process of writing their first books. My first interviewee is Gina Balibrera, a writer of fiction and nonfiction, who is at work on her first novel, The Volcano-Daughters.
Should we be surprised if a film called The Past spends a lot of time and narrative energy circling around backstory? No. But that doesn’t mean we have to excuse the film for undermining our desire to invest in its characters and their actions.
The weather in Michigan this winter is stubbornly cold. March has arrived, but spring seems distant. Used to be on days of obstinate gray, I would curl up on my sofa and read a great novel, but lately I can only read a few pages before the author’s beautiful prose charges my insecurities about my own writing. Instead of relaxing I’m analyzing every sentence, thinking again of that scene I need to fix, and then I’m worrying that I’ll never finish and I will be a failure. So instead after I’ve finished writing for the day, I wrap myself in a fleece blanket, and I watch a movie, often a romantic comedy.
In the white bathroom light, she can see all the orange hairs poking out of her arms and her legs. She stares at the ring on her finger, the ring Bruce bought her last night on an installment plan, gold-gold with a fleck of diamond inside a flower shape.