Monday, March 31, 2014
Sion Dayson was the resident writer in the Kerouac House for the winter 2013 writer in residence. She was working in the Kerouac House through the holidays and into the new year. Sion came to Orlando from Paris. When I visited, she had just finished work on her first novel, When Things Were Green, and was exploring new ideas. Her friend, Frédéric Monpierre, was also on hand. He is a filmmaker and he wandered around shooting footage with his digital DSLR camera. Every time he took a shot, the camera would beep loudly. It was like R2D2 kept complaining every few minutes. Regardless there was a certain magic as three artist each explored their craft.
Before Sion settled in to write, there was a knock at the front door. Two middle aged men wanted to know if they could walk through the house. She obliged, bringing them to the back of the house where Jack Kerouac wrote the Dharma Bums. Apparently this is a regular occurrence. When the literary tourists left, she finally settled in to work. I rather enjoyed the fact that she wore bright pink slippers while she worked.
She was working on an essay about the emotional scars that everyone carries with them. There was a long moment where she paused to gather her thoughts. She held her hands under her chin almost as if she were praying. She stayed like that for the longest time before she once again attacked the page with her pen. I was intrigued by her forceful grip on the pen making it seem like she were etching her words into granite.
Sion Dayson is an American writer living in Paris, France. Her work has appeared in Hunger Mountain, Utne Reader, The Wall Street Journal, Numero Cinq and several anthologies including Strangers in Paris and Seek It: Writers and Artists Do Sleep, among other venues. She has been a past winner of a Barbara Deming Memorial Fund grant for her fiction and her novel manuscript placed on the short list for finalists in the William Faulkner Wisdom Competition. She earned her MFA in Writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts. You can find out more about her work at her website, siondayson.com.