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Wang Anyi - a female writer of constant innovations

Updated: 2018-08-07 14:57:35

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 Novelist Wang Anyi

According to her character, Wang likes to hide behind her works and keep a distance from the hustle and bustle; even after being elected as chairperson of the Writers' Association, she has still managed to keep that poise and composure inside.

"I consider literature as sacred. With this attitude, all the other problems can be solved. Meanwhile, I don't require much in the way of the writing environment - as long as there is a place where I can write."

Wang usually writes in a small notebook. "I prefer writing by hand rather than by computer. All the words I use are understandable for anyone with at least a junior school education. I usually write in the morning at home, and read in the afternoon. But if there is some noise, like some neighbors decorating their houses, I often go to a coffee bar nearby."

In the past 20 years, Wang's works have experienced a lot of substantial changes in style. Even the most acumen critics can hardly categorize her into a certain group or genre.

Fang Fang, a renowned female writer, noted, "The large number of diverse works by Wang are well above the other female writers' works."

However, this has caused a small "headache" for the critics. "In the sense of literature criticism, Wang Anyi is the kind of writer who is hard to track. Her novels cover a wide range of subjects. You can never predict what her next subject will be," said famous critic Liang Yong'an.

Wang Jiren, another renowned critic, concurred, saying, "Just as you are ready to summarize her new work with a theoretic term, and are confident that you have grasped her main style, her next work turns out to be totally different. She is like naughty child who is playing a hide-and-seek game with you."

Wang herself is at ease with her changing styles. "Previously, some critics did not grasp my style correctly. When I first began to write, I was considered a "children's literature writer," while in fact I have only written a few stories about children. Then later, I was deemed as an "educated youth writer," but I seldom touched on the subject. I think my works gradually matured with my own growth. If there are changes, then they are my maturity and growth. I don't have dramatic changes like the critics say."

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