Jun 29, 2013

Immigration and the Writing Perspective

How immersion can cloud the waters of writing.
By Alex Stratis 06.28.13

Perspective and writing about being an immigrant is like swimming in the ocean or lake.
At first everything is clear, you enter the water and are at the surface. At first you have a clear concept of being in air and as you swim down and water surrounds you, you begin to lose perspective on what its like to be surrounded by air. Then as you touch the bottom of the ocean/lake you begin to get  used to being there. After a while you notice that you are kicking up stuff from the ground and the water becomes less clear and even more unclear is the memory of what its like to be above water.

It’s very much like moving to a new country. At first you have a clear idea of both places and gradually you get so immersed that your new perspective clouds you memories of your old home.

Writing is directly tied to this phenomenon and so when everything is normal and nothing is new and interesting like it used to be, without context its hard to find new stuff to write about.

How to solve this? Get out of your comfort zone, explore more, if you can visit other countries, constantly compare mundane stuff and eventually topics will be obvious.

Koichi can gather topics from the US about Japan because he is swimming around at the surface and doesn't have a clouded perspective.

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