In the Jan-Feb issue, we introduced you to Lili Dauphin, a writer who said she left Hispaniola with just an empty suitcase and mind full of experiences. She landed in the US and is now one of top writers from the region. Here is our continuation of the story. (Part I is also repeated in the current issue -select Lili Dauphin from the tabs above)
How/when did you develop a passion for writing?
My passion for writing began as a buffer to help me surmount my overwhelming odds as a child. Soon, it became my lifeline.
Some of the characters/stories you write about are based on your life experiences in Hispaniola, tell us what you remember most about life on the island?
I remember the natural beauty of the Island and its people. However, along with the joy came solitude and hardship. It was a conflicted paradise, but I have always learned to make the best of my circumstances, learn and grow. My efforts are in understanding and not in judging.
You mentioned that you arrived in the US with an empty suitcase and a mind full of experiences, how was the transition from life in Hispaniola to life in America?
America is the model for motivation. If you work hard, you’ll always triumph. We all need to be more appreciative of this beautiful land. America gave me a home and a place to do my most important life’s work and I’m very grateful.
You mentioned that your inspiration to write comes from a turbulent childhood and a culture that you are still trying to understand, tell us about that (turbulent childhood and what is perplexing about the culture)?
Growing up in a so-called third world country without parents can be overwhelming for any child. The superstition and the treatment of the restaveks have always been very difficult for my soul to bear.
Have you written or plan to write any of your novels in your native tongue (french)?
They will soon be translated into French and other languages as well.
Tell us about other projects you are working on?
The Tilou saga continues. She’s growing fast. Many surprises are ahead for my readers. As always, Tilou’s stories are poignant, exciting and inspirational.
You are being featured because of your accomplishments both as a person and as a writer. What advice do you have for aspiring talent who are faced with an abundance of challenges?
Thank you for your kind acknowledgement. Nothing in life comes without challenges. Of course, there are obstacles and voices from the past that we may have to dance around. Nevertheless, we should never give up on our dreams or listen to those who say: ”You can’t.” When you believe in yourself, you can accomplish anything.
Is there anything that we did not ask that you would like to add?
I wish to extend my appreciation to Karibbean Expressions Magazine for the concept of bringing together a Caribbean set piece of culture to the world. It is a vibrant and fascinating culture.
Carribean Talent Magazine found at karibbeanexpressions.com February-March 2011 issue