“This is how this begins, on top of a train” announces the narrator and protagonist of almost bitch, the recent novel of Leila Sucari Posted by Tusquets. “The past is a black bird that pecks at me”, reveals the woman who will embark on a journey in which she will question love, her past, desire and will gradually transform into another being.
Leila Sucari is a writer and teacher, she studied visual arts, philosophy and journalism. She published the novels There is no light inside (First Prize from the National Endowment for the Arts) and Fleeting (finalist of the Sara Gallardo National Award); the poems Wastelandthe book of stories I would talk to you about the wind and that of visual poetry Sea horses.
At the age of 6 or 7, he read a children’s novel for the first time and still remembers the impression it made on him. “It caused me a kind of break to finish read that book that he had accompanied me a lot and there I discovered what literature was, living inside a book. I remember that it was every day to read and read and read and When I finished it, I kept it inside the nightstand almost crying”, Leila Sucari told PROFILE.
almost bitch has an element that has not been well explored in the literature, which is that of menopause. A reality that a large part of people go through and that, however, is erased from the world of fiction. “I liked to take risks and try someone over 50 that it is assumed that you already have a comfortable life, thought out, organized and it is more difficult to break, change, be another, take risks. Well, I wanted to show that possibility of playing and breaking limits at any moment of a person’s vital existence”, explained the author.
Rosa Montero on “The danger of being sane”: “It is the book for which I received the most emotional response”
In this path of reconstruction, the protagonist discovers a completely new eroticismadvances in the stripping of his humanity, is linked to the animal and gradually abandons the conventions of coexistence with others. In the novel, pleasure and sexuality are narrated in a poetic way.more like sensations and images than as facts:
“We made ourselves water. It was all so soft that it seemed unreal. I ended with the stillness of a plant whose roots cause an earthquake. No one realized that it was not the same. Nobody noticed the explosion that occurred between my organs. Who would see it if we were alone? Outside everything was the same. Inside my eyelids, hair, blood, fingers, saliva, kidneys, sex, arms, time had come together. It was all one thing. A unit. Was she, at last, dead? From my crevices, tiny, shiny birds dropped out. they flew away”.
The metamorphosis of the author and the protagonist
The writing process of almost bitch It was long, lasting five years and went through the strict quarantine that influenced the author and, consequently, what appeared in the story. “The writing process and closing the novel during the pandemic was very intense, where my own look in relation to the world, to things and even to a physical point of view changedbecause of loneliness, isolation, confinement,” said Leila Sucari.
-Write journalistic texts, poetry, novels and stories, what is the genre that you feel closest to?
– I am not interested in the question of genres, I feel that each question that appears in the writing of each text asks for a particular format, a particular voice, a time, a rhythm and then, in which genre it is classified is the least of it. for me. I really like to blend and mix and I think that mixture is very rich. In any case, in the novel is where I feel best because I am passionate about entering a universe and getting into a sort of parallel life for a long time. Fiction allows me to reach a deeper truth.
-What are your next steps? What is she writing?
– I am finishing a novel written from the point of view of a teenager, it is a more playful and fun novel, I had fun and laughed a lot writing it. It also allowed me to reconnect with adolescence. Then I have a little book that is a mix between a poetic essay and poetry about dance that is also a crossover work between the contemporary dance classes of Margarita Molfino and the work of Eduardo Basualdo who are two very close friends of mine and we work all year It has happened quite a bit like this at the crossroads of disciplines.
-What books that you read recently did you enjoy a lot or did you feel had an impact on you?
-I read Annie Ernaux, a book called Pure passion I liked it very much. Later I was reading about translation, there is one by Corinna Gepner called Translate or lose pie which I also found very interesting, is an essay. I was reading Alejandro Zambra too, I hadn’t read it, I’m liking it a lot. Now I am about to start one of Anne Dufourmantelle whom I love. The last one, I’m a big fan of praise of risk and now I’m about to start another one and well, later in the summer I was rereading Marguerite Duras. His books are the ones I always like to come back to.
The earth dries up from so much love that it is being buried
the protagonist of almost bitch start by reviewing how to start the decline of a love relationship: “Now, the lack of rhythm with which air entered your lungs infuriated me. The sharp, spasmodic whistle gave me the feeling that I was going down a slide very quickly that ended in a sewer”, narrates Leila. “I woke you up from a blow to the left shoulder. Don’t make so much noise, I told you, you won’t let me sleep. You opened your eyes and turned your back on me. Before I would have hugged you, I would have attached my leg to the hollow of your hip, I would have put my nose in your neck until I fell asleep. But instead I turned around too. I could not sleep”.
But what is love made of? The writer not coincidentally has as a reference, which even appears in the text, Ovid, the Roman poet who wrote art of loving y Metamorphosis. “How else can you say love if not with shaking hands?”he wonders.
About the end the protagonist states: “I miss, above all, your smell. Your smell when I still liked you. In a moment I stopped feeling you, you no longer smelled anything. “Love is a matter of smell”, concludes the narrator.
You may also like