15 October 2008

That beautiful point in October.

Alright, so I'm currently buried deep in schoolwork for midterms, but setting goals anyway. This simply includes finding the time to read a little for myself, getting refreshed on my own fiction-writing, and enjoying the last of the warm weather. Sleep is unfortunately minimal, but there will be time enough for that soon. It's important to have one's priorities in check!

I went to a talk on Monday night by Suhayl Saadi, a Scottish writer and our own British Council Writer in Residence here at George Washington University. His mastery of language is absolutely astounding. And not only of the English language (that's tough enough); he weaves words and phrases adopted from languages such as Urdu into his novel, even changing or combining the words. Supposedly his first novel, Psychoraag (2004), includes a glossary for readers. He stressed the importance of translating more writing, stating that many people are limited to Anglophone texts because not enough literature is translated into English. He explained the essential connections between music and words and silence. I want to attempt Psychoraag when I'm up to the challenge: it's massive, it's multilingual, and it's difficult. He confronts the realms of dreams, alchemy, and space.
We talked for awhile afterwards about the difficulties of finding satisfaction in one's work - he admits going through an average of fifteen drafts of everything he writes, from newspaper articles or radio plays, to short stories or novels. Saadi says that as human beings and as writers, "we've experienced all the possible emotions - the rest is research." Writing is a collective act, of course - we all try to know another. I'm inspired. I'm certain I can make it happen.

1 comment:

j. chew said...
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