Apr 272018

I thought it was impossible to find a relevant word for today’s A to Z Challenge but I found it and it’s a great one, once you know what it means, just don’t ask me how to pronounce it. 🙂

Xenophilia means an affection for unknown/foreign objects or people. People have always fascinated me and so I write about them, though always generalizing so as not to embody one particular person in a single character.

Growing up with countless foster siblings had such an impact on how I relate to people and, even now, don’t easily connect with many. When I first started school teachers wondered if I could hear because I didn’t say a word… until after Christmas when I wouldn’t shut up. But now though I talk a lot to a few people it’s more light conversation, meaningless stuff to fill the silence even when I know the other party isn’t actually listening.

My wisdom and connection, I feel, comes through my writing and so I make friends through the characters I create, or meet, who I learn through each page of writing. Xenophilia is not an everyday word yet I feel it’s a common feeling among artists with the painter seeing life in objects and bringing a new perspective of something we see everyday to the writer who commits to telling the story of an imaginary character.

So let your affections out, love what you do and don’t be afraid to share your admiration of life as it can make it easier to connect with others who feel the same – and, trust me, there will be others.

Thanks for reading,

Sarah Butland

author of Arm Farm, Life Imitated, Blood Day and more

  One Response to “X is for… Xenophilia”

  1. I learned the word xenophilia while exploring for my X post, too! Great thoughts — the world definitely needs more people enthusiastic about xenophilia.

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