Today I am very glad to share great news with you: The Acentos Review, a quarterly art magazine that promotes the work of Latinxs writers, published my short essay Being Dual, in August 2020. I am thrilled to tell you this news, for this is my first literary publication.
The Acentos Review fosters and provides a space for Latinx artists who reflect through their work the experience of being a Latinx living in the United States. In my piece, I explored the encounter and intimate absorption of values—stories and lessons from two different cultures: Mexican and American. I depicted myself as a citizen and as an immigrant simultaneously.
As a female Mexican writer, I found this publication a powerful propeller, and I want to encourage other writers of color like me, whose mother tongue is not English. I want to encourage them to keep writing and expressing the voices of their hearts and minds, in spite all the challenges they constantly come across.
The fact that The Acentos Review recognized my work, catapults my confidence as a writer into the future. I want to deeply thank Gotham Writers for walking the road together with me since 2014. Thank you for all the knowledge and skills that you have given me to become a better writer, overall—a better apprentice.
I am particularly grateful to Kelly Caldwell, my instructor and my writing mentor. I thank her for her patience, as well as her accurate and thorough critiques. I am also immensely thankful to her for making the class a safe place where students can share their lives. And thank you, Kelly, for trusting in my writing.
I must also mention the huge inspiration I received from my fellow writers in all these years; their stories have been one of the best things about my life in New York City. I am especially thankful to my fellow writer Lisa Buksbaum for making me feel my writing is going somewhere and that it can touch women’s hearts.
Big dreams are made in conjunction with many short steps.
This is a short, loving one.
Florencia Ruiz Mendoza