The UK independent publisher, Platypus Press, has just published my story “Dissolution of Light” (translated from the Thai story, แสงสลาย, by Mui Poopuksakul) in their “Shorts” (small digital fictions) catalog. This is a relatively recent story in comparison to the stories in both of my previously translated and published collections, “The Sad Part Was” and “Moving Parts”. It was written in Kyoto, then first published as a chapbook in Thailand in 2009. I remember feeling excited after finishing the manuscript, as I felt I was moving toward a new direction with it creatively. It’s still one of the “older” stories I’m proud of.
The story revolves around a middle-aged man who repairs analog TV sets for a living. He owns a small shop in a narrow soi in Bangkok. Such shops can still be found today. I am from the generation in which the analog TV was an exciting new technology, and its global influence coincided with Thailand’s entrance into its first era of successful authoritarian capitalism. Arguably, we, the Thais, are still living in a similar condition, only now digital technology leads the way. In my opinion, the beginning of that era (my childhood years) shaped modern Thai culture. “Dissolution of Light” partly deals with that idea.