Magical

Been away for a while, mostly working on stories and writing for the dark side of The Persistence of Vision, The Paradox of Vision. It's an election year, and I am mightily fired up.

I wanted to pass all of this along however - an article from the Times Picayune about upcoming book releases from Louisiana authors. I want to check out lots of these in the coming months, as it seems our artists are acting in some ways as a cultural release valve for all the destruction and sadness my beloved home has experienced over the last few years. It's cathartic to read stories (even fictional ones) that deal with the hurricanes of 2005. It makes us more of a community.

On an utterly different note, the book I'm currently hashing out has lots of elements of Magical Realism. I've always been utterly enchanted by the genre (no pun intended), because for me, that is what life feels like. Every day things happen to us for which there is no easy explanation, and while we could probably discover the cold, hard truth of reality around us, how much more entertaining and fun is it to imagine, just on the edges of our rational minds, that magic is real, and that one day it just might really rain cats and dogs. Of course, what makes it so enjoyable to read is that the characters take the intrusion of the extraordinary into their lives as utterly ordinary, so much so that they are often more annoyed by its presence than anything. I may be flabbergasted, but they aren't surprised in the least.

Latin artists and authors seem to have a particular gift for it. I'm thinking Frida Kahlo and Salvador Dali in the visual arts. In literature, I love Laura Esquivel's Like Water for Chocolate, anything by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, and of course my favorite poet of all time, Pablo Neruda.
A recent example in film that I loved was the beautiful and exquisite Pan's Labrynth, written and directed by Guillermo del Toro. Their vision appeals to the spirit in me that sees the world through a child's unclouded eye. If you haven't before, check it out.




21 February 2008

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