I met with my agent yesterday in London and had dinner with him and his wife the Chinese writer Xinran. We had some very interesting discussions about the world literary scenes in different countries, and he made some observations about my current fiction writing and how to make it more palatable to the Western publishing market. I am still digesting this- so will write more about it when I’ve decided how to use his feedback in my work. Xinran and I had a fascinating conversation about writing from an Asian perspective to a Western audience and she asked me what I found most challenging about doing this. I said at the time that it was challenging for me to have to explain certain concepts and deeper meanings in my work- but I think having to articulate myself so often makes me reflect on what I’m doing and gain more insight into my process and bicultural background.
Being in London has given me the opportunity to see a lot of theatre and art which has really fed my muse. I have found myself responding the most to Surrealism and Impressionism in the exhibitions I have seen here. It has engaged my attention and I’ve realised that the aesthetics i want to achieve in my work are twofold- to capture the wonder of the world (mindfulness) and also to depict madness with its vividness and shock. I want my words to bleed off the page- and I also want to be able to conjure up the magic of it too. In my fiction at the moment I’m trying to depict mindfulness- and with the help of Simon Charles my artistic collaborator on “I could be you” the play we will be depicting madness through text, music and live feed video multimedia.
In other news as part of the Melbourne Fringe Festival I will be mentored by a theatre director to realise our vision for the play.
I also will be giving a talk at Melbourne Girls Grammar on the 25th August about “Culture and Identity” and how it affects me as an artist and its influences on my work. I will put the speech on this blog once I’ve written it.