Hello! I am a writer and I guess you could say my stories use magical realism and cultural farce to find the remarkable in the quotidian, simple everyday actions that hold meaning behind the obvious. I love creating new worlds that explore the minutiae of how we relate to one another. How we accept and reject others. The struggle to convince others and ourselves that we belong, and need to get along, despite our perceived differences.
There are learned disabilities (not learning disabilities!) that infect people’s thoughts about who is acceptable, who should be included and excluded in their group of friends, their neighborhood, their society, their country. And many times, we exclude ourselves from a group or activity because we’ve determined somewhere along the path our lives have followed that we are undeserving. Come on, haven’t you ever felt that way? I’m not smart enough, not good-looking enough, not athletic enough, whatever. I remember taking my parents to dinner one evening when we were visiting them – the restaurant we chose was reasonably priced, but it was located in what my father perceived was an upper-class neighborhood. “We don’t belong here,” he told me. “And why not?” I asked him. “Is there a sign that says, ‘Keep Out?'” “Not one you can see,” he said.
So sometimes the feeling of not belonging comes from within ourselves. The children’s story I am working on reflects this. Sometimes the feeling of not belonging is imposed on us by others. My adult story about an immigrant woman who cannot fit in her neighborhood is a reflection of that. My advocacy writings are a reflection of both.
My poetry tends to veer either toward humor or serious introspection, I never know until I put pen to paper!
Until next time!
~ Linda Drattell