I feel like I'm having an existential crisis. (Editor and beta reader, please, don't get upset if you read this post; you are giving me great feedback, which I am clearly grappling with and processing, painfully.) I've had two people I trust with my work tell me the protagonist in "La Bruja del Barrio Loco" is essentially a bad mother and unlikable. That cuts.
The first time my editor told me that with a previous version, I was like, "The fuck?" But, then I added some scenes to soften the protagonist and show a different relationship with the son. I think I have humanized her some more. I, in fact, don't see it, but I have been working on this story for a long time and really like the main character and characters in this piece. I really like the story line, and the one that is coming after it. In fact, this story was inspired by my sister, Little D.
But. what if, your main character is for all intents and purposes fundamentally unlikable? I have written about this topic before. Maybe my main character, Elisa Sandoval, is in a shitty situation, and she is really angry, which makes her unpleasant. Plus, she's a graduate student in a predominantly white institution. Of course she's pissed off. Ugh. I don't know. I am going to sit with the story a bit more, even though I want to get it out by the end of the month.
This morning, I am working on The Harvest, and after that I am going to read literary interpretations and original poetry by my students for workshops this coming week. My creative writing students have to submit final portfolios next week, which is what I will be evaluating on the way home to Arizona. What a splendid life, no? It really is.
Also, today is the big day! I am getting an author head shot, and we decided to put some cactus plants in the background if possible. Thank you Brett! Adios tatas. I have decided to wear my dark blue dress, the one I wore to Brett's wedding a few weeks ago, to minimize the tatas, and I am going to leave my hear long. I know TMI. You'll see the final version on the back of my book covers. :)
Write through your agony and hone your craft. #Resist!
Dr. Jesú Estrada,