Humans of Spectrum: Brenda de la Lopez
Why did you decide to participate in the production of Spectrum?
I’m on spectrum because I am pursuing a professional writing minor and wanted to get some experience with editing. Now as a part of this class, I get to work on Spectrum as a reader.
What do you look for in the submissions that you receive for the magazine?
When looking through submissions, I look for one of two things: connection or discovery. If I am able to relate to the story or the character of a piece, then the author to me demonstrates an ability to put human experience onto paper. For discovery, I am referring to pieces that make readers learn something new, stories that teach us lessons and surprise readers. To me these are the themes that Spectrum represents in the call for unique, new, and weird writing.
What genre or form of Spectrum interests you most, and what about it speaks to you?
The genre that most interests me is nonfiction. I have found that nonfiction stories and essays employ features of every genre. There are essays that use the conventions of fiction writing and make a piece of writing so engaging no matter how simple the actual story or topic may be, and that to me is amazing. Nonfiction pieces contain true writing about human experience and I have come to appreciate the stories that writers create within this genre.
Can you share a short story about your own writing?
I came to the current style and genre that I write in after taking a creative nonfiction writing class. I mostly write nonfiction short stories and poems. It was after writing a memoir piece that I realized what writing niche I fit into. I wrote about my earliest memory and how this event in my life contributes to my beliefs, values, experiences, and worldview. The piece was about my family immigrating to the United States when I was a child. After completing this memoir I discovered how important it was for me to put my story onto paper, and the value that writing has for me and for other writers. The process of reflecting on my life gave me an outlet to learn about myself and in a way, reiterate other knowledge I had gained thus far. Since then I have committed myself to growing as a writer and using my craft to in turn achieve personal growth.