Storytelling in spring

In Japan, the cherry blossom is appearing. Soon, it will be Easter. A time for rebirth, of sorts. Lets hope we can all feel the promise of better, more colourful times to come.

With many more of us now self isolating, this is an exceptionally difficult period. I hope everyone draws comfort where they can, be it seeing a loved one more than work routines usually allow, getting to slow down and so on. But I know that’s easier said that done. This could last weeks or possibly months. I for one feel rather anxious and agitated. I wish everyone who reads this and all their families, my warmest wishes and also my solidarity.

An orange growing in Hospital Sant Pau in Barcelona

I have been writing creatively for a few months now. In the coming weeks, I’ll be looking to share more of this writing on this blog. I know that wasn’t quite the point of this website, but to be fair, its already a bit rambling at times. And as I go on to note further on in this post, I’m not having much luck getting some of this writing acknowledged across other platforms, so it’ll help me, if nothing else. I find I have to write these days. It’s a form of therapy.

With people spending possibly more time at home this coming month or two, I also hope the writing might be of interest to others. Some of the short stories I’ve been writing are entered into short story, life writing and other writing competitions. I won’t be able to upload these until I know for certain the entries haven’t been long listed.

I have learnt that two of my entries, a short story and a memoir, haven’t been long listed for the competitions they were entered into, so they’ll be the first pieces I upload in the coming days. I know writing is a craft and I’m still learning mine. I’m not by any means the most gifted writer, but I don’t think I’m lacking the skill either. I’d be delighted to have your feedback.

What you’ll soon observe is that much of this body of work is focused on queer Jews. That’s to say, people of Jewish origin, identity or faith who don’t identity as heterosexual or are sexually different in some way. Why? Well, for starters, I’m a queer Jew. And I feel Jews have a whole history to share that due to rising global anti-semitism, still needs telling, frankly.

Add to that the fact many queer voices have simply gone unheard, and you’ll see I have a personal passion for sharing queer Jewish experiences (I should caveat this by stating I recognise I’ll only be doing this in the most partial and skewed way, using my voice, not others’). Some of the stories are experimental. Some of them may even be in bad taste. They won’t please or interest everyone. That’s fine, no single piece of writing does.

I’m also especially interested in Morocco and the diaspora there. I may choose to borrow a bit from other random articles and items I’m writing for other platforms. Some of it might be a bit hit-and-miss.

The luxury of it is that I get to control what I write and where it gets promoted. I suffer from a lack of confidence these days, so for all the rejection emails (or absence of emails) I’m getting used to from writing competitions and the sort, this is a small way of saying, ‘I’m okay. I will have a platform.’

Its going to be the strangest of springs (and autumns for those living in the Southern Hemisphere). In Japan, the cherry blossom is appearing. Soon, it will be Easter and the Passover. A time for rebirth, of sorts. Lets hope we can all see and feel the promise of better, more colourful times to come.

If you are interested in reading more of Andrew's blogs and other published work, do take a look here.