There are no more writers in the Amazon

28/11/2015 13h39 - Updated 28/11/2015 13h39
Photo: Eric Lima

It is easy to get that impression if we follow the literature that is produced in one of the largest states in Brazil. Names like Milton Hatoum, Thiago de Mello, Astrid Cabral and Tenório Telles are enshrined in our literary circuit, and it is always an event to be celebrated when we see them involved in some new project, especially because we feel represented when an Amazon artist has their work recognized, we are proud to have someone you admire and who has shared with us the same background.

However, provided that these examples cited above have become the flagship of what is written in the state, the publishing market seems to have ceased to highlight new names, new perspectives for the development of literature in the Amazon. I feel the same can be said of Brazilian literature, so rich and comprehensive in scope, but that seems to have been crystallized a few decades ago, only that would make this too big a text that I probably would not have enough property to handle, since not visited every corner of the country.

What I do know is that the Amazon desperately needs to contemplate their own history, understand the nuances of their own culture, and resort to such authors is indispensable for, by literature, can better understand their own reality, the story to know the past to deal with the present and build a better future. What is a wonderful proposal, but what if you already have those who try to translate this reality into literature, still having to deal with the shadow of those who came before?

In a context like Brazil, where reading is not an encouraged practice and not seen as a liberation tool, becoming a writer is an uphill task, and I congratulate the immortals who have managed to do this at a time when truth and poetry were punished with gunfire, but it is curious to imagine how difficult turns out to be when there is no kind of institutional tool (schools, programs) that encourages such training and even professionalize the practice of writing, which is always regarded as the hobby and creative people full of feeling to share.

It's been a few years since incentive edicts cultural production in the Amazon actually encouraged cultural production, today there is a significant shortage of such initiatives, and certainly it is something that discourages any writer, but we admit, anyone who writes knows that doing what we do is an act of rebellion, a cry against the world, then it is really interesting as we are so seriously affected by the obstacles which the government (one of the historical enemies of creative power, always good to remember) is pleased to lift both.
We were deleted from the publishing market, almost forgotten after Telles, Cabral and Hatoum, deprived of a cultural education by an educational system so badly articulated as our art circuit, but we still have our craft, we still have our talent, we still have the rebellion that comes to toast. We wrote, and this in itself is a transgressor, since we do not live in a country that supports this kind of thing.

"But you study Letters for the failure to pass a law?”
"Are you working or only writes?”
"In addition to writing, you intend to do what life?”
"You know you do not give money neh?”

Are some examples of what I have to hear when they ask about my profession. What is curious is that none of this is said in order to offend or disparage, but are some of the pearls with which common sense evangelizes Brazilian citizens. If I'm already a famous author (which apparently should happen magically, according to common belief), beauty, what I do is relevant, is important, it is art, but if I sell what I produce on the corner, in some fair beginners authors, with texts printed in A4 and ride a booklet that, I'm probably a deluded that very soon I will have to face reality and see that my work is not work.

No, Inspiration is not when out of nowhere a light descends from the sky and suddenly I start to speak in tongues, or write is something I do since I was born. Writing is a craft that develops, is an investment that cost a lot of my services as a teacher in women and men who have managed books before me, travel so I expanded my horizons and learn more about other cultures or a few gallons of coffee, so I feel like that you can not miss when you are dedicated to anything (no instant, I'm the type who prefers the past in colander).

But, to all who write or who dream of writing, is in the Amazon or in places where this text may have come, I say that the first person you have to believe that what we do is something seriously ourselves.

We invest in our own training, in our own creative process, We encourage even our inspiration, is tucked in books or on the bottom of an empty glass in the corner bar. Every author, before working with any publisher, always fought independently; writing is a solitary profession, growing alone, It develops alone, but that should not languish alone. I often say that it is a test for when we can go a step further.
But to go further, We need to get out of the place.

So it has to be on the corner, offering a fanzine at a time? Or a fair, when you are a complete unknown and has only your Facebook friends to count on the launch of a manuscript produced almost hand?

many authors, Popular or not, They like to criticize the new media, the impact of social networks, They like to emphasize how much this further discourages production, how disparage reading and creates multiple zombies virtual space, e, perhaps with a frequency that is not healthy, proclaims that it is lack of the culture of the people not be appreciated reason. And I say that's bullshit.

It is more an opportunity than a hindrance, a chance we exercise a thing that every, I repeat, ALL independent author needs to be: entrepreneur. None of us begins with a businessman, an editor, one cover artist and an illustrator in our payroll, since we can not sustain ourselves or with our work, which leads us to have to develop other skills, other talents that we may see our projects grow.

E, If you write, it is also important to understand that their work is not new, nor angelic treated you a gift for humanity: if you want people to respect and know what you do, yes you have to leave home and be heard, to view, just as an amateur musician or a beginner painter. No one knows his name, and do not expect you to know once it is on the cover of a book, what, by the way, They will not know the name also.

There are publishers, no permission from bookstores, there is no government support. But there we, there is our passion, there are tools we can use to make us exist, us to work, even if it is making us know one person at a time. And there are also other artists, others who may accept to share this battle, to help develop other talents that you need to deal with a world that has no obligation to respect what you do just because it was you who did.

And Manaus is not needed actors, musicians, filmmakers and novice painters, with new ideas and fleeing to common sense, people who are actually willing to bleed for their work. And that can teach us much about the art of versatility, They can greatly add to our writing. It also does not require an effervescence of social networking users, you can either create a local public network and national, e, why not say, international?

It is this deletion, this dislocation that literary production in the Amazon is suffering that can make it more interesting for the contemporary author. This is the moment for the writer to leave home, make contacts, speaking in public about how to be shy, talk with artists from other parts to better understand our own art, how to refine it and make it talk to the other. It is time that, a few decades, we can say that we live and we won, to prepare the ground for the next generation of writers who comes after us, going over into the same dark ages we now face.

We need to leave home, make our space. After all, to Lady Gaga have pedaled through New York with a keyboard on the back taking advantage of the chances he could to perform.

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