A few sound bites from Andre Alexis, author of Asylum.
On stock characters: "What they [the characters in Asylum] represent are people at different moments trying to do the right thing. They are recognizable within what it is to be Canadian, but their responses are unique. Although they come from places you know, they act in unpredictable ways."
On growing up as an immigrant: "It's difficult to write about it directly. When characters have to come to terms with coming from an outside place...that's how I talk about it. To me, that's the essential immigrant experience."
On providing answers: "Literature is not the ideal place for political answers. I would write an essay, where morally, simplicity is necessary. Literature isn't a place for simplicity."
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Ashley Sy is a Winnipeg born and bred freelance writer specializing in arts, music, and culture. She has written for Stylus, The Manitoban, and MyWinnipeg.com, and has begun copywriting for the Regina-based firm Benchmark PR. Currently, Ashley is working on getting her short fiction published—she fully embraces the classification of emerging writer. You can hear Ashley every Saturday night on 101.5 UMFM, on her pop-punk nostalgia show, Parking Lot Rock.