Thursday, 26 January 2012
Kimberly Menozzi, Italy & Writing!
"I'm frequently asked if living in Italy has any influence on what – or how – I write. Naturally, the short answer to this is 'Yes, it does.' Of course it does – how could it not? I live in a country which I'd never even considered living in until I was actually here and preparing to do so.
The truth is, when I arrived here eight years ago, I knew nothing about Italy aside from a few menu items and a multitude of stereotypes. More importantly, since I've lived here, I've found myself viewing the world – not to mention my own home in the US – a bit differently, perhaps even a bit more clearly. Distance will do that for you, and I'm grateful for that.
When I started writing Ask Me if I'm Happy, I didn't intend to educate my readers about Italy. I just wanted to tell a story. As I wrote that story, though, I discovered certain themes and threads appearing in the narrative. I realized I was writing about people I knew in real life, and not the stereotypes I'd read countless times before. Along with the characters populating the novel, Italians and Americans alike, the Italy I described was as true to life as I could make it.
I'd already separated this story from those of many other writers by setting it in Bologna. While this is a city I love, it isn't a city most people think of when they think 'Italy'. I continued in this vein, writing as realistically as possible and doing my damnedest to make that city live and breathe as vividly and deeply as I could.
Any time I walked through my new hometown of Reggio nell'Emilia, I drew from the resources it provided: snatches of conversation, whether cheerful or heated; the clothing of the residents going to and from work; the way the gold-tinged sunlight slants downward on an early February afternoon; the fog which hangs low over the tops of buildings, never quite burning off before descending once again as night falls.
Just crossing from one end of town to the other could give me both a world clad in grey mist and a fragile, sunlit instant, depending on how close I was to the plain or to the mountains. That shift from one aspect to another is as mercurial as an Italian's disposition – perhaps even explains it – and it's something I'm still learning to get used to.
Ultimately, I wrote the story I wanted to write. I told the story I wanted to tell, the way I wanted to tell it. So far, it seems to have worked. I hope my readers are inclined to agree."
Thanks Kimberly for sharing this with us and wishing you great success with your life in Italy and your writing.
Kimberly is also an group member at Famous Five Plus for Indie Authors
Here are Kimberly's links
Website - http://www.kmenozzi.com
Blog - http://www.kmenozzi.com/blog.html
Books: Ask Me If I Am Happy
US - http://www.amazon.com/Ask-Me-Im-Happy-ebook/dp/B0051BDTXI/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1325002876&sr=8-4
UK - http://www.amazon.co.uk/Ask-Me-Im-Happy-ebook/dp/B0051BDTXI/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1325002876&sr=8-4
US - http://www.amazon.com/Alternate-Rialto-ebook/dp/B0051BTUQI/ref=ntt_at_ep_edition_2_2
UK - http://www.amazon.co.uk/Alternate-Rialto-ebook/dp/B0051BTUQI/ref=ntt_at_ep_edition_2_2