«'Forgotten King Gudú' is a magnificent story where love, hatred, disappointment, incomprehension, cruelty and, of course, magic appear. The whole morning world »
«Fantasy and magic always accompanied the writing of Ana María. Although his novels and stories were developed in a real world, magic was not alien to this world »

TO Ana María Matute You know too much … Or not. This writer who became the capital letter 'K' in the Royal Spanish Academy still has facets to teach. Born in Barcelona, ​​she had different residences in the peninsula due to her family situation and health problems that she dragged from a very young age. And the observation did the rest.

Starting in many cases from the pessimism, and with the Civil War as a backdrop, he built a realistic imagination of his own. Lyric and practical writing, with modernist technique and a certain interest in surrealism. Surprisingly, the last novel that he published in life has a completely different tone. And he worked for ten years.

One of the many unforgettable quotes of Matute says: «I have always believed, and I still believe, that imagination and fantasy are very important since they are an indissoluble part of the reality of our life». Forgotten Gudu King It is a fantasy text. Ediciones Destino reissued it in 2018, four years after the death of the author. In addition to the text are included notes, drawings and unpublished paintings that the writer elaborated during the writing process of the book. The novel became a kind of obsession for Matute, who came to build models of the new worlds he created.

María Paz Ortuño She is an editor and adjunct professor at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. A great friend of Matute since the eighties, Ortuño collected and edited the complete stories of the writer in The door of the moon. In addition, he was responsible for writing the epilogue of Family demons, the posthumous work that Matute left unfinished.

In PlanetadeLibros we talked with her about the always remembered author and King Gudú, one of his masterpieces.

Forgotten Gudu King It was an editorial event when it was published in 1996. What did you suppose in the life of Ana María Matute? Did she often talk about "her" favorite novel?

Ana María Matute talked a lot about Forgotten Gudu King, It was the novel that he had always wanted to write and that he wrote. When it was published (after more than twenty years of writing), it was a satisfaction for her because of the excellent reception she had among the readers. It was also a great encouragement to rewrite and publish other wonderful novels.

His first novels and stories, prior to the publication of Forgotten Gudu King, captivated by his "lyrical realism". Where do you think the Olar kingdom was born and all that world of fantasy and magic?

Fantasy and magic always accompanied the writing of Ana María. Although his novels and stories were developed in a real world, magic was not alien to this world. In fact, he had already appeared in previous works as Three and a story.

Ana María loved and knew the history, she liked the Middle Ages and in Gudú she recreated it in her own way (Francisco Rico, in answer to the speech of Matute at the entrance to the Academy, said that the Middle Ages of Ana María's books it looked nothing like the true Middle Ages, but it was the Middle Ages). At the same time, she was passionate about the Arthurian cycle and all the European legends that Andersen picked up, the brothers Grimm and Perrault, to whom he dedicates the book.

Ana Maria Matute ever read JRR Tolkien or know of the success of the series "Game of thrones"? The story of the Gudú dynasty could be considered almost family with its magical kingdoms, the sagas, fantasy times …. Although she defined it more like a medieval saga like King Arthur.

Of course he read Tolkien, but from the success of the series I do not think he knew anything.

Was King Gudú Forgotten His Great Battle? Not only because it is a story of ambitions, wars and borders but because the writing of the novel accompanied her for 25 years of her life.
The history of Gudú is, of course, a battle. A battle with writing and a personal battle, but the truth is that in the end he won a great victory.

«His creation and his writing were above
of good and bad personal moments »

Matute suffered a depression, as she said "the vacuum". Do you think that this fact influenced this novel and its literature in general?

All personal events, good and bad, influence in some way the work of a writer. But I do not think that "emptiness," or black hole, as he also called it, influenced his work more than any other fact. His creation and his writing were above.

Matute received a long list of awards and tributes: Premio Planeta 1954, Premio Nadal 1959, Cervantes Prize How did he respond to them?

Obviously he was happy. But he never wrote thinking about a prize. Never. Although it is true that he thanked them, he said that just as he accepted the bad things in life, why would he not accept the good things? With Cervantes, in particular, he felt truly happy. He always thought that they would never give it to him, and when they told him, he had one of the greatest joys of his life. He could not stop saying: "I'm happy!"

Three words that define it.

Wise, vital and good.

«Ana María loved and knew the story and at the same time she was passionate
of the Arthurian cycle and all the European legends that they collected
Andersen, the brothers Grimm and Perrault »

At what time of the day did Ana María prefer to write? Any custom or mania or superstition?

Over the years, his writing schedules had varied. Lately I preferred to do it in the morning and correct in the afternoon. He kept writing with an electric machine, and when he corrected, he supported the folios on a hard cardboard and crossed out with very thick markers so that no trace of the corrected was left.

What will we discover about Ana María Matute in this book?

A whole universe A magnificent story where love, hatred, disappointment, incomprehension, cruelty and, of course, magic appear. All the morning world.

What relationship did she have with the readers? Did he answer his letters? Did he receive gifts? Any anecdote?

Very good, I received many letters from grateful readers. Besides admired was very dear. But he answered few because he felt panic at having to write a letter. In his life he wrote very few.

Finally, two short ones: Why should we remember, and not forget, Ana María Matute? And King Gudu?

That question is answered by herself. Ana María is in her works, anyone who reads them will discover why one can not forget about Matute.

Source of the new