In their new issue, south-Asian journal Almost Island has published a transcription Xi Chuan gave with Vivek Narayanan in New Delhi in December, 2013 (along with some excerpts read from Notes on the Mosquito), titled “Doubting Yourself and the World at Once.” Here’s a passage:
I think, to be creative you need to at least be symmetrical to the surroundings. You may get your language from others, from previous writers, but maybe there is another possibility–that is, you can get your language from reality itself, from society itself. And I wrote an essay some years ago in which I talked about the Chinese oxymorons, social oxymorons. So, before, when I wanted to be a new poet, I tried to be a surrealist, or a symbolist, or a futurist, and now I don’t care about all these terms, and I feel that I need to be honest to myself, and I need to be honest to my awkwardness in this society, my embarrassment in this society. And once you admit that you are embarrassed, then maybe, maybe you can go on with your writing.
Click the image above for the full article, which can also be downloaded as a .pdf file.