From real life to story – and back again: Using autobiographical fiction writing to understand self, others and family generations
Alberta Natasia Adji
New Writing: The International Journal for the Practice and Theory of Creative Writing
Taylor & Francis
School of Arts and Humanities
Edith Cowan University
Writing autobiographically includes complicated responsibilities to the subjects involved: to family members, friends, colleagues, and even cultural communities. This article explores creative developments occurring during the process of writing an autobiographical novel called ‘The longing’, which is drawn from a recollection of intergenerational lived experiences of a middle-class Chinese Indonesian family from 1956 to 2018. I reflect on my strategies and approaches on tackling challenges that arose while using autobiographical material and autofictional techniques to write fiction and communicating cultural complexities for it allows agreeable distance between the author and her writing subject. In the article, I also argue that the use of terms such as life writing, autobiographical fiction and generational novel is most fitting for my project, since they form the postmodern life narratives produced by culturally and historically marginalised women.
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Adji, A. N. (2023). From real life to story – and back again: using autobiographical fiction writing to understand self, others and family generations. New Writing: The International Journal for the Practice and Theory of Creative Writing. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1080/14790726.2023.2187065