By Lydia Mulligan
I am so excited to listen to and meet Lidia Yuknavitch in February. She will be coming to Auntie’s Bookstore on February 26th at 7:30. I first read her essay Explicit Violence (trigger warning for sexual and physical violence) a few months ago and was entranced by her use of language and structure. She also explores this type of language in her memoir, Chronology of Water. In both of those pieces, as well as several other published essays, she confronts the question of being a woman in this world, the violence we face, and the strength it takes to get back up and just live. She lives in the Portland area and teaches a myriad of workshops and lectures.
Lidia has a very specific aesthetic. She is a lyric and narrative writer who turns structure on its head. She does really interesting things with literary nonfiction that I have not seen previously. I am excited to learn from her and see a radically different way of writing nonfiction. Also, it helps that she has the same name as me. It makes me feel like we might be kindred spirits. I also love how she is able to flip from fiction to nonfiction so well. Switching genres is such a hard task. I admire anyone who can do it with ease.
The visiting writer’s program at Eastern is such a cool part of our program. We not only get to see the writer read from their work, but we also get to see them in a workshop setting. This gives us a new perspective on how to teach workshop and workshop another writer’s piece.
If you are around in February, I would definitely recommend coming to see Lidia Yuknavitch as she reads from her new book On the Backs of Children.