LSQ: Ah, elemental love! Can you share with us the idea behind the creation of
this story? What were its influences?
Avra: “The Lotus Wife” is a fairy tale, which features elements such as transformation, magical meetings, and characters identified by their attributes rather than having ordinary names. The idea came to me after I read about the life cycle of the lotus flower. What intrigued me the most was how long a lotus can stay underwater before it rises from the river mud in full bloom.
LSQ: As the story progresses, “The blue of the sky was swallowed by a thick veil of smog.” How much of the lotus girl’s and the fisherman’s relationship was determined by the world around them?
Avra: When I was writing my story I didn’t plan to use this particular literary device, but I suppose I did end up using it subconsciously! The weather and the environment reflect my characters’ journeys, and the lotus girl’s health, as she is a being inextricably tied to the natural world.
LSQ: Your story ends in a lovely statement of hope. As the author of the world you created, what do you think the future holds for your characters?
Avra: Sometimes people love each other, but they aren’t ready to be together just yet. I really like the idea of the lotus girl and the fisherman growing up, becoming different people, then meeting again under better circumstances–a second first meeting, perhaps less magical, but no less important than their first one.
LSQ: Anything else you would like to share about your story? Are you working on anything else at the moment?
Avra: Thanks for asking! Currently I’m working on a Young Adult short story. It’s about dissociation, the power to freeze time, and self acceptance. It’s also, at heart, a genderqueer love story.