Marie-Helene Bertino Breaks the Laws of Physics

September 22, 2021

At Electric Literature, Marie-Helene Bertino discusses the importance of disrupting realism in her fiction and opting to explore the fantastical to get closer to the truth. “Perhaps we want to break the laws of physics because it’s fun,” Bertino says, “because we want to reach a particular emotional resonance unable to be accessed through conventional methods. Because we do not think using the supernatural elements is out of the ordinary. Because the supernatural is our ordinary and to write realism would be, for us, stranger. Perhaps we venture outside realism because to express our understanding of life, because removing the middleman of simile and making the figurative real feels more honest.”

is a writer and illustrator. She is the author of two illustrated books, Last Night's Reading (Penguin Books, 2015) and Sanpaku (Archaia 2018).

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