Friday, March 14, 2014

March 2014 Update

There are some exciting things developing in my life recently, and I'd like to share a little because, naturally, I'm excited.

I'm on Spring Break right now, and it's not really a break, because I will be doing a considerable amount of schoolwork. I'm gearing up for a writing tutor conference being held at my school. I will be one of the speakers, and I will be presenting on the inherently contradictory oppressive yet liberating situation of writing studios. I'm very much looking forward to it, but as of now, I'm completely unprepared. I don't even have a paper written up, but when I do, I hope to be able to get it published in a journal. Wish me luck!

I'm also taking a couple of courses this Summer. They're Brit Lit and Applied Linguistics! I'm taking the linguistics courses to earn me my TEFL certificate, so I could do literacy outreach with refugees in the states, or I could teach abroad if that's where life takes me. I'm also minoring in Spanish, so this will help me if I ever move to South America (which is my dream). Speaking of moving, it looks as if I will be moving to the city for the duration of the Summer. It's a nice area (a sublet), and there's a cat involved. It's a potential adventure.

Something that you might all be interested in is that I'm back to ghost hunting! I took a little break for a while. My group went on hiatus, but I recently went on two with another group. I found out a couple of weeks ago, actually, that my group is back in business. We will be meeting up soon, and we're planning on doing an overnight investigation at an abandoned hospital from the 1930's! I've never actually spent the night on location before, so I'm a little freaked out and ecstatic at the same time.

And also, can anyone refer me to any good vegetarian recipes or favorite brands? I'm going vegetarian for a few different reasons. I don't know how long it will last, but it will definitely take some concerted effort. By the way, I just had some wicked quinoa sliders today, and I need to get the recipe.

I know I'm not the most avid blogger, but I want to thank all my followers for sticking with my throughout many life changes (and blog changes). I might not be able to post as regularly as I'd like, but I'm not giving up anytime soon!

Saturday, March 1, 2014

A Recommended Read: Edgard Telles Ribeiro

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Just recently, I finished reading I Would Have Loved Him If I Had Not Killed Him by Brazilian author, Edgard Telles Ribeiro. The novel was for a World Literature class in which five contemporary authors visit to host a reading and short lecture.With a title like the one it has, I expected the book could have gone one of two ways: reminiscent of a soap opera, or an interesting read. What I didn't expect was the work of art that unfolded before me.

 The book is set mostly in Brazil, and it is narrated by a failed film-maker and an antiques dealer. The film-maker, Fernando, bumps into an old friend, Andrea (the antiques dealer). They begin to talk, when Fernando asks about why she decided to settle down and open an antiques shop in Brazil's capital city. Andrea explained by telling him the story of her recently deceased great-aunt. The great-aunt, Guilhermina, was married off at the age of 14. She was given by her parents to a 66-year-old man and raped on her wedding night. She spent every moment of their 7-year marriage planning his murder . What's even more interesting is that it was based on a true story, which the author revealed to us.

The author came to my university to give us a reading, and when he was going through the passages, the audience could really get a grasp of the rich language used in the text. The novel was crafted with such skill (narrative looping, intense imagery, symbolism, parallels, etc.), that when I had the chance to meet him and have my copy signed, I couldn't help but be a little nervous. I mentioned that the way he was able to weave together these stories reminded me of when I read One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez (read it if you haven't), and he said to me, "Read Love in the Time of Cholera, and you'll fall in love with life." Since then, I hunted down a copy at a local Goodwill, and it's on my reading list.

I highly recommend this book, and I'm waiting for the English translation of his next novel to come out in September. Here is the link on Amazon. If you read it and don't like it, there's something wrong with you.