Two Novels, Both Alike in Dignity…

Lara Henerson

Lately, I’ve been working on my second novel, and I can’t help but to be amazed at how different it is from my previous one, in so many ways.

The reason I’m so staggered by this fact, is that when I first began it (maybe two months ago), my number one concern was making sure it didn’t feel like a mirror image of my first novel. Both are set in San Francisco, and both are written by yours truly, and in a lot of ways, my “writer voice” is quite similar to my actual voice, hence the concern.

This is a concept I’ve been thinking about a lot, as this is only my second large-scale fiction project. Of course, every narrator will sound different, and every character will sound different. But at the same time, all these different “people” are coming out of the same writer. So the question I’ve…

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Conclusion of The Last Year of my Younger Years

Usually when a year started I had a series of certainties. I knew I would finish some year at the University and start another, or that I would start looking for certain job at some point in the year, or that I would travel or move here or there… For the most part, the certainties in my year to come were provided by my mom and her life rhythm.

When 2014 started I was alone in Vancouver with only one thing certain in my head: My last year of school would end in April. From then on, it would all depend on me and what I did of my time and myself. I underwent a lot of anxiety and stress, time was ticking and I started considering new paths. Argentina was far in the corner of my table of options. Little did I know I would end up here. The path that took me here wasn’t smooth or predictable. Some people disappointed me and I disappointed a lot of people, myself included.

This year was all about hard and almost irrational work. I put a ton of effort into things that were and weren’t worth it. I was the hero of some stories and the villain of plenty more. I won amazing friends, but lost others that were really dear to me too. I took tough decisions that ripped my already wounded heart open and it feels like I left my path to Buenos Aires marked with a thick trail of blood.

This year I still dragged around a lot of shit I didn’t need in my suitcase, I insisted in packing useless weight from my earlier years along with all the new stuff (both good, bad, awesome and shitty) and I finally had to compromise. Today, after getting rid of useless memories and a wedding dress, my suitcase is much lighter: it carries my books, my scripts, my ideas, my projects, some crafts and only my favorite clothes.

The conclusion is that this year I’ve learned a lot more about life and myself than any other period of my life. I learned it’s true that I am capable of pulling off some crazy shit if I put my heart and mind to it, I learned that hard work will pay off as long as I pick my battles wisely and stop giving myself away to places and people that don’t deserve me, I learned that no one will keep me on track but myself and I have to stay focused, I learned that all those 9gag shitty inspirational posters telling you to stay true to yourself actually do have a point, I learned that independence and freedom are as much of a privilege as they are burdens.

I’m deeply thankful for every opportunity I had, every work I did, every person I met, every trust and friendship won and lost. I’m thankful for VFS, for Charlotte’s Song, thankful for all the help I got in LA, thankful for every ingredient in the insane mix that brought me to Buenos Aires and the wonderful people I’ve met here. I’m thankful for feeling that I run short when I call my best friends “family”. I’m thankful because either if it was on a movie set, on a hotel’s Front Desk or during a late talk on Facebook, this year I truly understood the value of being part of something larger than myself.

Now I’m all set for 2015, with a bunch of shiny new tools in my hands and clear big ass goals in my pockets, happy to have survived the curves and excited to see what will be new for me and my dear family and friends.

In which I explain the purpose and intent of this blog

I’m a Venezuelan writer and translator. I moved to Vancouver to do the Writing for Film and TV program at the Vancouver Film School a little bit over a year ago, right after I got my Bachelor’s.

Being in this new city has meant plenty for me. This wasn’t only a huge shift in my career plan. The timing and the circumstances of this experience have changed more than my so called talents. I may be stating the obvious here, but my view of the world is somewhat fresher and more mature. Now I’m an adult who cares about the environment, eats healthy, exercises and has a whole new path drawn ahead. What’s interesting about all of this though is the way I now see Venezuela, a country that’s been quite the news story for some years now, but particularly these days.

If you read me from anywhere outside Venezuela, ask around what people know about us. Chávez, Miss Universe, violence, oil, beaches, maybe the rain forrest…? That’s probably as much as you’ll hear. I’m sure my fellow Venezuelans will agree. In Vancouver I got to experience my country from the outside for a long enough period to, first, have a better grasp of what’s really going on with us, Venezuelans, a mysterious group of people that seem to be always happy and complaining at the same time, and second, feel how my “latinhood” and background affects my new life.

My intent with this little writing experiment of mine is to share how my view point has evolved and hopefully will keep evolving from now on. I’ll do my best to avoid turning this into a reactionary thread of pointless thoughts, promise. This whole thing, I hope, will be more about this young Latin adult growing as a person, as a Venezuelan and as a professional.

Vancouver

Venezuelan "youngster" shares her appreciations on international issues