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Book Review - Three Tides - Part 5

In this final piece of Pineda’s puzzle she gives us the entire theatrical production, "Like Snow Melting in Water," which came from her previously described emptying and gathering processes. It was sparked by an article she ran across in the New York Times about a dying village in Japan. Apparently, she worked on it for 2 years and originally conceived of it as a novel, but she explained that it decided itself to be a work of the theatre instead. On the surface, someone outside this process might wonder how Pineda, with no particular tangible connection to Japan, could write something set there. But she does it, and she does it beautifully.

And having followed her through her process as I have during this sometimes convoluted though always interesting journey, I can see clearly how her explanation makes sense. She says that she learned what it was to be a refugee first from her husband, and perhaps it was her contact with Katrina victims which reminded her of it, and that life itself had taught her what it is to get old and not be physically able to do what used to come easy. And that through these things she could recognize, and discuss, those feelings universally. And she further explains that “writing what you know” may in fact be the advice which keeps writers in tiny self-centered bubbles, when, in fact, connecting to the human feelings of others, when coupled with some research, may be all that’s required to tell the stories of complete strangers.


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