Marquez: Live to tell

In the 1960s, the Explosion of Latin American literature had begun, but no one knew that Marquez would join it and become its brightest star.
Open up the journey of memory
“Mom asked me to go with her to sell the house.”
This is the first sentence of Living to Tell. For no reason, Marquez drags you into a time warp the moment you open a book before you’re ready. There is no turning back, you have to follow him all the way forward. The date was February 28, 1950. Marquez was not yet 23, and had just dropped out of law school after three years of study. He wrote a daily column for Barranquilla’s Herald, paid better than nothing, lived in poverty, smoking 60 bad cigarettes a day, full of ambition and biding his time.
Then mom came and dragged him back home to sell a house. It’s an interesting point, and after a bumpy ride, the landscape of the past comes into view, but everything is ruined and desolate, and some very important memories fill his mind again.
Many years later, as He began to write his memoirs, He would say: “That brief, simple two-day trip meant more to me than I could ever live a hundred years and write. Today, I’m in my early 75’s. I know it was the most important decision of my life as a writer.”
Why is it so important? Because this trip made him more determined to become a writer, let him find the recurring “Macondo” in his work, discovered the colonel (Grandpa Marquez) house, discovered what he really wanted to write.
Macondo was actually a banana plantation, and on the train back home he had read the name. He later used it as the name of a fictional town in several books, and in the novel macondo was based on their destination, Aracataca.
We, as readers, follow Marquez back to his old place. If you read One Hundred Years of Solitude, you will find a lot of familiarity, because you will find that everything has a prototype: Aracataca also has padan almond trees in the streets, and his grandfather colonel Marquez made little goldfish; It’s true that grandma used to make money by selling animal candy to support her family. The colonel had actually killed a man in a duel; Marquez’s sister Margot really liked to eat dirt when she was taken to her grandfather’s house.
Marquez and his mother did not sell the house, but he found a new passion in his heart. At the moment of his departure, he said, “The mere sight of all the plants and trees here awakened in me an irresistible desire: I will write, or I will die.”
Left-behind children and hard life
Marquez is a true left-behind child. Shortly after he was born, his parents went out to work and left him at his grandparents’ house.
One meeting he remembers very clearly was when he was six or seven years old and his mother came to Aracataca. “I just walked in and everybody stopped talking. I stood in the doorway, unable to recognize my mother until she opened her arms… She held me in her arms and smelled something special that never changed. I know I should love her, but I can’t. Guilt came over me and I was hurt.”
At the age of 11, he finally returned to his parents. First he opened a pharmacy in Barranquilla with his father, then his mother and other children came to meet him. Family reunion is not easy. Barranquilla’s drugstore was losing so much money that baba finally had to go out on his own. When he was 12, his mother pulled out all the money and told him to enroll in an elementary school 10 blocks from his home. The headmaster was kind to him and allowed him to take home books from the school library, and at that time he was particularly fond of the Arabian Nights, Treasure Island, and the Count of Monte Cristo.
However, food for thought is not enough, these days in Barranquilla too poor to make a living. Finally, dad came back, sold everything, and moved again to sucre to open a pharmacy.
In Sucre, money was still tough, but his parents sent him to junior high school at St. Joseph’s, one of the most rigorous and expensive schools in the Caribbean. Later, he traveled alone by boat to Bogota, the capital, for high school.
The youth began to work towards literature.
The first book
After high school, Marquez enrolled in the law department of the National University of Bogota. In the afternoon, when he had no classes, he would curl up in his room reading. In high school, he read literary classics, and by this time, he was reading modernist writers. But what fascinated him most was Kafka. “Kafka’s books are mysterious,” he said. “They break new ground and often go against tradition. Facts don’t need to be proven, they happen when written, with unparalleled talent and unmistakable tone.”
Kafka’s Metamorphosis gave him a great impulse, and he wrote a short story and sent it, delighted and frightened, to the Colombian Observer. Unexpectedly, the manuscript was published. In this way he read his first short story in type.
Soon he wrote a second and a third.
However, a “Bogota riot” changed the agenda. Bogota couldn’t stay any longer. He and his brother had to leave. He entered the University of Cartagena as a second-year law student. By this time, he was writing editorials for the local El Universo newspaper in Cartagena. Working in a newspaper every day, his heart as a writer faded — he hit a wall.
“Home,” which I had been working on, turned over and over and did not exceed 40 pages. So he went to Barranquilla with the 200 pesos he had taken from his mother before returning to Cartagena. He wrote the giraffe column for the local Herald for a pittance.
It was then that his mother came to him and asked him to sell the house with her. As mentioned at the beginning, this trip meant a lot to him. After his return, he abandoned the book “Home” and began to write a new novel, “Withered Leaves,” which took him a year to finish. Although the novel was rejected by the best publishing house in Argentina, he knew that what should be completed had been completed. “The manuscript will not be returned.” Withered Branches and Withered Leaves “is the book I want to write after accompanying my mother back to the countryside to sell a house.”
The novel was not published as expected, and life went on. In the meantime, he returned to Bogota to write editorials for the Observer. He did well in journalism, writing several big stories, and good luck followed, including a national Short story award for his story and the publication of “Dead Leaves,” which went on to run 4,000 copies, most of which were stored in a warehouse for which he did not receive a penny. Soon, Marquez traveled as a special correspondent to cover the g-4 summit in Geneva, Switzerland. Stepping on the plane, The story of “Live to Tell” ends there.
The rest
In 1955, he was supposed to go to Europe for only two weeks, but when the newspaper was seized by the Colombian government, he was stranded in Europe. As a result of this accident, he stayed in Paris for three years. During those three years, he took film directing courses, wrote for the press, and produced Bad Hour and The Colonel No One Wrote To Him.
Marquez married Melced in 1958 at the age of 31 and settled in Caracas, Venezuela, where he worked for Time magazine. From 1959 to 1961, he worked for the Cuban Latin American News Agency in Bogota, Cuba and New York. By this time, the Latin American literary explosion had begun, but no one knew that Marquez would join it and become its brightest star.
The story begins with a short trip to Acapoco, Mexico, where he drives his family on vacation. It was an ordinary trip, but one day, “out of nowhere,” the novel’s first sentence comes to him: “I have decided to tell my story as my grandmother told me her story.” As if hypnotized, Marquez pulled over to the side of the road, turned and drove back. When he got home, he sat down at his typewriter as usual, except that “this time I didn’t get up for 18 months”. He wrote 1, 300 pages, smoked 30, 000 cigarettes and owed 120, 000 sobians, he later said.
One Hundred Years of Solitude went to press on May 30, 1967, length 352
Pages, 650 pesos each. The hard work paid off, and the book was published to great acclaim, not only from critics, but also worldwide.
Today, “One Hundred Years of Solitude” sits on bestseller lists for years, and no one is quite sure why. But there is no doubt that Marquez’s charm is immediately appreciated by anyone who reads his words.