Tuesday, December 7, 2010
When My Mother Was My Age
When my mom found out I'm writing a memoir about my relationship with my dad, she was very supportive - partly, I think, because she was relieved I wasn't putting our relationship under the microscope. But the truth is that I've always found my mother a deeply fascinating woman, and I'm hoping in a future literary work to use her as a source of literary inspiration. Thus when I found out that Jane Friedman of Writers Digest was hosting a mother-daughter interview series at her blog, called "When My Mother Was My Age," I jumped at the chance to participate. It seemed like a great opportunity to get to know my mom in a role other than "mother" and at the same time, stash research notes for the future. As it turns out, she suffered from similar sources of turbulence in her life at my age. My interview with my mom and my reflections can be read at Jane's blog.
- Leslie Shimotakahara
- Toronto, ON, Canada
- Leslie Shimotakahara is a writer and recovering academic, who wanted to be simply a writer from before the time she could read. Hard-pressed to answer her parents’ question of how she would support herself as a writer, Leslie got drawn into the labyrinthine study of literature, completing her B.A. in Honours English from McGill in 2000, and her M.A. and Ph.D. in Modern American Literature from Brown in 2006. After graduation, she taught English at St. Francis Xavier University for two years. Leslie woke up one morning and realized that she’d had enough of the Ivory Tower. The fact that she wasn’t doing what she wanted to do with her life loomed over her, and the realization was startling. It was time to stop studying and passively observing life and do something real instead. She needed to discover herself and tell her own story. This blog and the book she has written under the same title (Variety Crossing Press, spring 2012) are her foray. Leslie's writing has been published in WRITE, TOK: Writing the New Toronto, Maple Tree Literary Supplement, and GENRE.