Assayer of Student Opinion.

The Prospector

Assayer of Student Opinion.

The Prospector

Assayer of Student Opinion.

The Prospector

Subscribe to our newsletter

* indicates required
Prospector Poll

Whataburger or In-N-Out

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Whether near or far, writers adore El Paso

Dominique Macias
Aneley Queen, a book full of heads; a necessity when you’re an English major.

Talent continues to flow from El Paso, allowing people to become as big of a star as the one on Franklin Mountains. From this collection of stars are several writers. Whether they were born here, or recently moved to El Paso, the city has had a tremendous influence on their work. 

For example, there is the author of “All that Rises,” Alma García. Born in El Paso, García has fond memories of crossing the border as a child, a unique experience that only the Sun City can provide. However, while moving to different states as she grew older, there were some aspects of El Paso she began to miss, things as simple as knowing how to spell her name at a restaurant. 

“I miss hearing Spanish spoken around me every day, or (it being) the default of the world around you,” García said. “This whole entire culture that understands my name. That sense of being understood by the greater culture, I miss that.” 

“All that Rises” is a book that takes place on the border and was written when García was almost two thousand miles away from it in Seattle. 

“What’s been interesting is trying to get people to understand ‘Well wait you live in Seattle, but you’re writing about the border, why?’” García said. “People seem to think that because you live in a certain place, you should only be writing about a certain place. Back in those days, I felt like people didn’t even know where El Paso was.” 

García wanted to paint the picture of what living in El Paso was like, hoping to relate to locals and show outsiders a glimpse of its specialty. 

“Hopefully for a reader in El Paso this will feel like something familiar,” García said. “And for people who don’t live in El Paso I hope that they have a window into a world that they don’t normally have access too, and that makes them think differently about the world and the people in it.” 

Although UTEP’s graduate professor for Creative Writing, José de Piérola Ph.D., may not have been raised in El Paso, the city still has a special place in his heart. Seeing the border from the university moves de Piérola as it reminds him of his birthplace Cajamarca, Peru. 

“What is special about El Paso is how similar it feels to my country back in Peru,” de Piérola said. “I like the fact that it’s a bilingual city.” 

He also feels inspired by the multitudes of culture that exist within the El Paso region.  

“There are a number of moments in which I am intensely moved, when I stop for a second,” de Piérola said.  “For instance, stepping outside of the (university) library and (seeing) the mountains of Juarez. I am aware that I am in a border town, and (it is) a privilege to be a part of two cultures at the same time.” 

Many of de Piérola’s books are written in Spanish. For example, “Sur y Norte” is a short story collection that takes place in Peru, the United States, and across the border. The collection of stories is meant to relate to first-generation immigrants who think of a new life in a new country, but eventually miss their old life in their old home. 

Professor de Piérola has lived in El Paso for almost two decades because of the impact the city has made on him.  

“To see the border, not as a division, but the bridge that connects different cultures,” de Piérola said. “My life had always been in a border: culturally, linguistically, and emotionally.” 

Much talent continues to flow from El Paso, allowing outsiders to show appreciation to the city. The mixed culture, a bright star on the Franklin Mountains and seeing the Juarez ‘X’ from across the border is something only this city can provide. 

Sofia Sierra is a staff reporter and may be reached at [email protected]     


Leave a Comment
About the Contributors
Sofia Sierra
Sofia Sierra, Web/Copy Editor
Sofia is a junior studying multimedia journalism with a minor in creative writing. She is the web and copy editor at The Prospector. After graduation, she hopes to work outside of El Paso to continue to grow as a writer.
Dominique Macias
Dominique Macias, Contributor/Photographer
Dominique Macias is a junior majoring in media advertising minor in creative writing. She is a contributor at The Prospector. After graduation Dominique hopes to pursue a career in the media publishing world; as a photographer or writer.
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All The Prospector Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *