Something to Declareby Julia Alvarez
In her first book of nonfiction, Julia Alvarez offers two dozen personal essays about the two major (and interlocking) issues of her life -- growing up with one foot in each of two cultures, and writing. In 1960, when Alvarez was 10 years old, her father's participation in a failed coup attempt against Rafael Trujillo, the repressive dictator of the Dominican Republic… See more details below
In her first book of nonfiction, Julia Alvarez offers two dozen personal essays about the two major (and interlocking) issues of her life -- growing up with one foot in each of two cultures, and writing. In 1960, when Alvarez was 10 years old, her father's participation in a failed coup attempt against Rafael Trujillo, the repressive dictator of the Dominican Republic, resulted in the family's self-imposed exile to New York City, where Dr. Alvarez set up a medical practice in the Bronx while his wife and four daughters set about the serious business of assimilation. That uprooting formed the thematic basis for two of Julia Alvarez's novels. Her father's revolutionary ties inspired the third, the story of one of Trujillo's most infamous atrocities. Something To Declare is about the influences those experiences have had on her work, and about the practical lessons she's learned on her way to becoming the internationally acclaimed writer she now is.
- Penguin Publishing Group
- Publication date:
- Product dimensions:
- 5.44(w) x 8.09(h) x 0.73(d)
- Age Range:
- 18 Years
Read an Excerpt
TEN OF MY WRITING COMMANDMENTS
I. In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few.
II. The obligation of the artist is not to solve the problem but to state the problem correctly.
III. Do not be afraid!
ANGELS APPEARING TO SHEPERDS TENDING THEIR FLOCKS BY NIGHT
IV. If you bring forth what is inside you, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is inside you, what is inside you will destroy you.
ST. THOMAS, GNOSTIC GOSPELS
V. Poetry presents the thing in order to convey the feeling. It should be precise about the thing and reticent about the feeling.
VI. One must write a poem the way one rules an empire, the way one cooks a small fish.
VII. El papel lo aguanta todo. (Paper holds everything.)
VIII. You must change your life.
RAINER MARIA RILKE
IX. The function of freedom is to free someone else.
X. If you want to be a writer, than write. Write every day!
Excerpted from Something to Declare Copyright (c) 1998 Julia Alvarez. Reprinted by permission of Algonquin.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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Alvarez writes with a kindness and wit that combined, make for a very nice read. Definitely a feel-gooder
Julia Alvarez lays it all out for those of us who love her writing...She is true to life and inspirational...