Anna Molina. "Complex relationships also help you thrive as a person"
Old age, loneliness, death, betrayal, infidelity, homosexuality, secrets... The characters in these interconnected stories are life itself. They are the protagonists ofAnecdotes of the first magnitude, by Anna Molina (La Magrana), an author who lives between Vilella Baixa and Denmark. Molina combines writing with the world of wine, a product that she produces in Priorat, in the small Vil·lusionistes winery, to export it to the European market, especially in Denmark. A relationship between both territories that she exudes to her narrative. The author presents the book this Wednesday at the Adserà Bookstore in Tarragona (7:00 p.m.).
What should an anecdote have to be of the first magnitude?
For me, everyday life is anecdotes that can become stories. I wanted to play that the day to day has another magnitude.
In that day to day, the characters live from loneliness to betrayal, gender violence or cowardice. Emotions very well worked.
Thanks. I have tried to work on feelings without naming them. I think the readers are very clever and know how to get things out that don't need to be specified. Personally, I am interested in them not giving me everything kneaded, that they let me imagine things, with half-open endings, where I can put my grain of sand. And it's what I was looking for.
They are not very happy.
You have to be a very good writer to write happy characters. I haven't gotten here yet, maybe the next one. I have put them in a real world, although not gloomy, in which there is sickness, loneliness and betrayal. Later, each one takes it as he can, with his tools.
I have read that the cups, which start the stories,...
It's a somewhat true story because one fine day I received a couple of cups and today I still don't know where they came from. No one came looking for them, either. However, it went well for me because they made me write. I had to invent an origin.
They travel, but they do not transit through all the chapters.
Only for four. Sometimes the backbone is people. Others, objects or smells.
“We think we have freedom, but we are more and more slaves to the system. In the stories, let each one look for the connotations that he wants »
With them, wine is one of the common threads. You dedicate...
We make wine in Priorat and we export it, among other countries, to Denmark as the main market, which is where I am. Wine is a part of me and they have made me see that it is present in almost every story. I hadn't realized it, which means it's very intrinsic.
Do you mean to say that they will forgive you in Priorat for drinking wine in small cups?
I think not. I don't know how I'm going to do it because this one is very big, it's not small.
Talk about smells. Is there someone in Denmark that transports it to Catalonia?
No. They are totally different. In the Priorat area there is a strong smell of Mediterranean herbs. In Denmark they are more humid, more of grass and forest. You know exactly where you are because of the smells and these also have to do with the world of wine, since you have a more developed sensoriality. I really like that smells take me to travel and are reflected in anecdotes.
How do you lead Priorat to become the world's wine center?
If you ask the people of Burgundy, they will not agree. Obviously, we have risen a lot in the world ranking and I think that people are doing well. It has been an explosion of warehouses. Personally, I have always been there, I think it was about time something like this happened because it is a very difficult land to cultivate, the weather is extreme. What is happening now is a gift to perseverance.
When he sells the Priorat wine to the Danes. What do you like?
Tell them stories. At first they find it expensive, because obviously it is not a cheap wine. They think that machines work everywhere and it is not. So, you explain to them that sometimes we work with a mule, others with a tractor; You show them what the typology of the land is like and they begin to understand why it has that price. The wines must be explained, talk about the people who work, the land, that it is difficult to extract so many kilos per vine, which sometimes are grams. That it is this meager production that makes them have a very special product in their hands.
«Priorat is a very difficult land to cultivate, the weather is extreme, so what is happening now with wine is a gift to perseverance»
It tells the wine as well as its stories. Relationships between parents and children are very complex.
There are more difficult than easy. However, it is beautiful that there is something that overcomes everything. I mean, complex relationships also give a lot of themselves, they also help you prosper as a person and that's what I wanted to reflect. Not all families are easy, but the experience this can give you can also help you in life.
The motto of the French Revolution has changed: 'fraternity, equality and fatherhood'. Don't we have freedom?
We think we have freedom, but we are more and more slaves to the system. I have killed it and I have let each one look for the connotations that he wants to find. Similarly, in the story entitled fraternity, there is not much brotherhood. And the same thing happens with equality. I play with words.
I think they are not stories. They are linked.
I wanted a different sort of literary artifact.
With surprising endings in each of the chapters.
I've let the characters tell me where they wanted to go and the result is that they have taken me to places I didn't imagine, without judging them and they have surprised me too. I have really enjoyed writing it.
What would you highlight about this artifact?
Perhaps the novella should be valued a little more because it is difficult to write impressively in a few pages. In northern Europe it is more recognized, but in the south, the genus is somewhat forgotten. There are great storytellers in Catalonia who are perhaps more popular abroad than in the Catalan market. That is why I have made a mix between a short story and a novella, to reach the reader who is neither one nor the other. A combination of both can be done.