Wednesday 23 December 2020

Maroula Blades: celebrating her flash fiction collection "The World in an Eye"

 Today I welcome to my blog Maroula Blades who has recently published The World in an Eye, a collection of flash fiction.   

1. What do you write? Why this in particular?

I write novellas, short stories, flash fiction, poetry and children stories. My work focuses on the themes like identity, austerity, disabilities, discrimination and racism.

I try to be a voice for those who do not have a platform to air their opinions, grievances and aspirations. The goal of my work is to address and empower the multi-features of diversity—and we find those characteristics in the people of every cultural and ethnic background. In addition, I want to promote a better understanding of cultural differences and to highlight the social issues which continue to trouble the margins of our societies.

2. What got you started on writing in the first place?

I started writing in my mid-teens. My mother is quite a strict woman, so there wasn’t much opportunity for a strong-willed, self-opinionated teenager to air her views. As I couldn’t discuss my standpoints, I wrote them down as confessional poetry and songs. From there, one thing led to another.

3. Do you have a particular routine?

No, I do not have a specific routine for writing. As I work in different artistic areas, each creative discipline materializes intuitively.

4. Do you have a dedicated working space?

I have a designated area for writing and reading. But with painting, I need sometimes half the floor of my living room to support a canvas. This was the case when I painted the artwork used on the cover of my new flash fiction collection “The World in an Eye”, published by Chapeltown Books. The format of the artwork is 47.64 x 59.45 inches. The book cover design is a rectangle, but the picture is actually an oblong.

5. When did you decide you could call yourself a writer? Do you do that in fact?

After a few publications, I called myself a writer. This was several years ago. Deep down, I thought I didn’t deserve such a lofty title. Nowadays, depending on what’s being published, recorded or exhibited, I might use the term “multifaceted artist”.

6. How supportive are your friends and family? Do they understand what you’re doing?

I have a handful of like-minded friends who are very supportive. As I live in Berlin, it has been essential to have support, as I didn’t speak the German language when I first moved to the capital from England.

My family can relate to my works and offer valid encouragement.

7. What are you most proud of in your writing?

I’m proud to address important social issues in my written works that aren’t tackled often in the mainstream literary arena. Since the recent Me Too and Black Lives Matter movements, a vital shift is taking place in the literary field which encompasses a few more diverse voices.

8. How do you get on with editing and research?

I enjoy the research aspect of writing. I love to weave facts through fiction. Editing is time-consuming and rarely aids in getting the creative juices flowing, but is invaluable to the success of a piece. With it, text come into fruition.

9. Do you have any goals for the future?

Currently, I am developing a hybrid manuscript of poetry, prose and art called “Roll Over A Change Is Coming!”. The project would not have materialized without a grant from The Jan Michalski Foundation for Writing and Literature in Switzerland. My goal is to have this project completed by next year. After which, I will submit the manuscript to publishers in the hope someone will find it interesting enough to publish.

10. Which writers have inspired you?

Toni Morrison, Zora Neale Hurston, Sylvia Plath, Maya Angelou, Jayne Cortez, Ben Okri, James Baldwin, Amiri Baraka, Nikki Giovanni, Alain Mabanckou, and Derek Walcott to name but a few.


Maroula's  exhibitions at  the Gallery Lietzow - Berlin

                                                                  Photo by F Jerke

                                                                 Photo by J Heinrich
                                                                  Photo by F Jerke

                                                                Photo by J Heinrich




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