Submission for Soft Skull Press

July 20, 2021

A memoir of the imagination in three parts.

Part Two:

Small Rituals

Soft Skull press is a beautifully visceral name, it makes me think of penetrating the impenetrable, softly. Wouldn’t I love to text my ex and say, “Hey, guess what? Soft Skull press is publishing my memoir!”  But they’d go on about how it’s not really a memoir because, according to them, it’s not a true story.  

Sometimes it takes an imaginary friend to help you reveal the truth.

Taking advantage of Soft Skull’s once a year offer to consider manuscripts is a beginning step, and I am appreciative of the chance, thank you.

The last time I asked for support via my social media, 13.7 K hits registered on my one-minute video on vimeo. I am waiting for immunity for the world so I can take another long walk across Northern Spain and have created a new wordpress: erikaonline.blog to prepare. I will walk for 66 days exploring my memories, backwards. Part three of my memoir takes place on that walk, it is about the first time I made my way on the El Camino de Santiago.

Born in the 50’s, liberated in the 70’s, radicalized in the 80’s, educated in the 90’s – and now we are so diversified beyond these generalization that many of us no longer care to gender ourselves. So, I’ll just say people like me who enjoy reading memoirs and travel adventures, who have an open-ended sense of humour, a fascination for how memory works, an interest in migration, ethnography, adventure and an enduring penchant for transcendence and transformation – these are my readers.

A note on narrative style and how my work fits with Soft Skull Press. In non-linear systems “the change of the output is not proportional to the change of the input” (in mathematical terms that is). This seems like a fitting way to describe my narrative style — and perhaps a fitting metaphor for my life: sometimes over-productive and sometimes counter intuitive, unpredictable while remaining beautifully balanced on the edge of contradictions and coincidences. I think Soft Skull’s audience will appreciate the refuge of such a fine balance and enjoy this alternative vision of lived experience.

Please enjoy the synopsis and short bio also attached with this letter of Intent.  

Again, thank you.

 Erika Paterson.

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