Life writing by Stas Medvedev

It all started with

It all started with my strong affection for the fine wine appreciation. It’s stimulating both intellectually and sensory. I verbalised the organoleptic evaluation in tasting notes and captured stories the wines would tell me. I traveled the wine regions, met extraordinary people and diligently studied the wine. It was impossible to keep the living experience to myself, and this is when I urged breaking my celibate of writing.

I created a wine blog. It helped to gain more confidence in releasing sporadic thoughts orderly on paper. Reading contemporary creative nonfiction a lot, I notice the shortcomings of my writing and I am eager to improve it. I have a strong desire to learn how to engage readers and made a timid attempt to break out from the wine domain. I explore memoirs as a new mode of writing and dream of family biography.

On April 1 this year, I will celebrate my 40th anniversary. My great-grandfather Karlis Štelmanis didn’t wait until just two days before I was delivered to this world. He died at the age of 90. Upon the return from the UK where he served as a pilot during WW1, he met the love of his life. They settled in homeland Latvia for peaceful life until 1949, when Soviets separated Karlis and younger son Oliver from wife and daughter and exiled men to Siberia. My grandpa Oliver would later become a Soviet composer and drug addict.

3 years ago, remaining the last Štelmanis I know, I moved with my family to my ancestors’ land.
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