Writing for liberation exercise: odd moments

It can be nice, and freeing, to move away from the typical (overused, cliche) plot points of murder, marriage, affairs, and winning, to just honing in on a single, strange moment. I like these moments because they are so humanising, and precisely because they can counter the Hollywood cliches about life and what is exciting... Continue Reading →

What is dance?

Venezuela. The day Florcita understood what dance was, she was waiting for a Communist Party meeting to start. Two comrades arrived in their car. They were in their eighties, and had been active for decades, including when the party was underground and repressed. The woman had had a stroke a year ago, and with help... Continue Reading →

Too much water

I'm sleeping, surrounded by pillows and a warm doona. It feels like soft flowing hills. Outside, there are storms. They gather around the city like hungry seagulls. Greedy rumbles and too much water. Overflowing concrete barrios and broken stone roads and rubbish pile-ups by drains and nearby a town that will slide down the hill... Continue Reading →

The balloon seller

Her mass of taut and floating balloons seems heavy. The Puebla street is five layers of flaking paint visible on the lamp post. It's anxious crowds shopping slowly between the two stories of old buildings and churches and rubbish bins spilling over with taco and cemita wrapping. Among the balloon sellers and crowds you don't... Continue Reading →

Writing for liberation exercise: “Preaching” politics

Some journalists, writers, and fiction authors would argue that when we have a social justice message we should communicate it subtly through situation, rather than stating the message outright. Many argue that this method respects the reader more - they'll understand. On the other hand, respect can also be just saying what you mean, clearly,... Continue Reading →

A hand’s lines – Julio Cortazar

The following story is a wonderful example of a resistance vignette. I've translated it from Spanish. From a letter thrown on the table, a line extracts itself and runs along the pinewood then goes down a leg. If you look closely, you can see the line continue along the hardwood floor, climb the wall, enter... Continue Reading →

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