"To write anything worth reading you have to put everything you have into every sentence. There can be no lazy thinking, no clichés, no borrowed tropes, no third-hand experience; there can be no hiding.” Miranda Darling
Posts tagged "translation"
A shower of stardust

A shower of stardust

It was long after nightfall, and a soft breeze played over Guillaume’s face. He had positioned his telescope to the portside and aft, to observe the constellations of Centaurus, Circinus, Volans and the Southern Cross. With a yellow glass disc placed over the end of the telescope, the image was more sharply focused. He was...
My invisible friend

My invisible friend

At one point they tried to calculate when time began, when exactly the earth had been created. In the mid–seventeenth century, the Irish bishop Ussher calculated not only the exact year, but also a starting date: October 22, 4,004 years before Christ. It was a Saturday (of course). Some even say Ussher gave a precise...
Anita and happiness

Anita and happiness

Pablo detested Anita because he couldn’t prove what he’d suspected ever since they’d met: that she was an alien. He hated her name because it wasn’t Ana, plain and simple, Ana with real problems like cellulitis, unpaid bills or anxiety brought on by the knowledge that human beings are a mere parenthesis between two unknowns....
My grandmother

My grandmother

With some frequency, we hear readers ask authors how much of their novels they’ve pulled from their own lives, assuming that some if not most of the content must be autobiographical. One of the fascinating things about this memoir by Xesús Fraga is that readers ask the same thing, because it seems simply impossible that...
About my Aunt Nené

About my Aunt Nené

She spent her life clinging to the skirts of the mother who was also my mother’s mother which is to say mine and Betina’s grandmother. My grandmother’s skirts were like a priest’s cassock and her shoes were sturdy like men’s shoes while her hair was tied up in a black bun because her mother was...
Translators Aloud: Charlotte Coombe and Tina Kover

Translators Aloud: Charlotte Coombe and Tina Kover

In May 2020, in the early months of the first Covid-19 lockdown, Tina Kover posted on Twitter that she was considering uploading a video of herself reading from one of her translations but wasn’t sure if anyone would be interested in watching such a thing. Amid a flurry of replies, fellow translator Charlie Coombe suggested...
Ann-Helén Laestadius: Lost lands and lost lives

Ann-Helén Laestadius: Lost lands and lost lives

Ann-Helén Laestadius’ Stolen is a forceful story of a young Sámi woman battling to preserve the lifestyle and traditions of reindeer herders in Sweden amid a wave of torture and massacre of the animals on whose livelihood they depend. At the age of nine, Elsa witnesses the aftermath of the brutal killing of her favourite...
Into the volcano

Into the volcano

In Iceland, volcanoes used to be a menace; terrible, sleeping monsters that erupted once in a while, spewing ash and lava over the country, killing people and animals, destroying homes and causing famines. Today, thanks to science, we know much more about them, we understand why they erupt, and our brilliant geoscientists can often warn...
History and 'the people'

History and ‘the people’

The stories in German Fantasia were written between 2016 and 2020. Although the times and the conditions under which each of these texts was written were different, they turn on themes and ideas that have been important to me for a long time: first and foremost that of the incoherence of history and the roles men play in it,...
Back to that place

Back to that place

José went in a car with two plainclothes policemen. I went in another with the detective and a muscular man covered in tattoos. The vehicle I was in drove slowly, up the same road that a few days earlier I had travelled up on foot, clothed and intact, and on the way down, torn and...
Wildness and wonder

Wildness and wonder

Franco-Mauritian author Caroline Laurent’s latest novel An Impossible Return is an epic love story set against the shocking injustice of the Mauritian government’s deal with Britain for independence – which resulted in the wholesale evacuation of the Chagos Islands to enable the US to set up a strategic military base on Diego Garcia. When independent, passionate Marie...
Winds of change

Winds of change

They sat around the plot, as peaceful as seabirds. Their hands plunged into woven baskets, pulled out coconuts that they set on their skirts. Always the same gestures: raise the machete, split the fruit with a sharp thrust, husk each half before putting it on the ground, the meat exposed to the sun. Then the...