Author Guest Post - Belinda Acosta

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Readers, please join me welcoming Author Belinda Acosta who will be guest blogging here today!

PhotobucketOn how Damas, Dramas, and Ana Ruiz came to be:

When I was contacted about writing a series on quinceañeras I had just reviewed Julia Alvarez’s nonfiction book, Once Upon a Quinceañera for The Austin Chronicle. So, the subject was in high on my radar. What intrigued me about the subject was similar to what intrigued Alvarez, I think: What does it mean to be a woman today? Is there something about the Latina experience that is unique? Why have a ritual to mark this “passage”? Where did the tradition stem from? And on and on and on. I find it amusing that I did not have a quinceañera, I had never been to one prior to writing this book, and I don’t have any children. I do know, from first hand experience, how complicated the relationship between mothers and daughters can be. Part of what makes Damas, Dramas, and Ana Ruiz stand out is that it focuses on that relationship—the good and the bad, hopefully, with heart and candor.

PhotobucketOn writing and writers I admire:
My two writing heroes are Flannery O’Connor and Harper Lee. I have great respect for Lorna Dee Cervantes, Wendall Berry, Sandra Cisneros, Julia Alvarez, Helena Maria Viramontes, Lorraine Lopez, Alex Espinosa, Luis Alberto Urrea, Manuel Muñoz, and many others. When I was younger, I was trying to mimic O’Connor, which is hilarious—a Midwest Chicana going southern gothic? But I love that I tried. Ultimately, what I take from all the writers I admire is an appreciation for the beauty of their prose. I revel in a well-written sentence, a lovely image, and words that make you want to lift them from the page and examine them like tiny stones. I like to think that all of them influence me in some way, but that somehow, I’ve happened upon my own style.  I hope I’ve outgrown my mimicking days. For one thing, I don’t have time! But I also think it’s a common thing among young writers. Except for those few savants out there, I think writers spend a long time in their journeyman years, experimenting, mimicking, reading, writing, failing, waiting, giving up and finally learning what kind of writer we want to be.

Thank you for that entertaining post, dear Author! Readers, your thoughts / comments are most welcome.

About the Author:
Belinda Acosta works as a journalist in Austin, Texas, writing reviews and features on books, film, and the arts, in addition to a weekly column on television (TV Eye) for the Austin Chronicle. Her work has appeared in Poets & Writers, Latino USA, Latino Magazine, AlterNet and other publications. She was a Michener Fellow at the University of Texas at Austin where she received her MFA in Writing in 1997. Damas, Dramas, and Ana Ruiz (Grand Central Publishing, August 2009) is her first novel.

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1 People said

  1. I loved this guest spot! I just participated in her blog tour! Great book!

    xoxo Amy (Park-Avenue Princess)


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