Wabash College has a best selling author. He teaches Spanish, but that is not his only profession. Professor Luis Aguilar-Monsalve is one of the "Must Read Authors" of Ecuador with multiple books published and more to come.
"I have been writing since high school," Aguilar said. "My first book of short stories was published in 1986. Since then I have published six books of short stories, one of which has three editions."
Having three editions published is a big deal in Ecuador and shows how popular Aguilar’s stories have become. He has become very popular for his writing style which uses metafiction, a breakage of structure and conception of short story as well as time and space. Narrative also may be changed through each short story to be a new person or a new way of telling the story.
Aguilar’s popularity is going to be fully realized this summer as one of his short stories will be made into a film by Reynaldo Pacheco ’06. Aguilar and Pacheco will be working in Ecuador to make one of Aguilar’s short stories comes to life.
"I got the idea to make one of Prof. Aguilar’s stories into a movie and I asked if he wanted to do it," Pacheco said. "There are so many good stories and we need to be careful to select one that will be good and hopefully include Aguilar acting in it."
Prof. Aguilar was open to making the film, but there were a few concerns as to how the movie would be made and which story would be selected.
Pacheco said it will be hard to make the film, "because it is so complex with so many challenges to get all of these complexities into one project. We’re kind of being crazy because we don’t know the locations in Ecuador and it will be an adventure creating the story in a film."
Although Aguilar has been writing for a long time, he does not consider his writing to be the most important thing. He equally enjoys his writing and also his teaching.
He was teaching a Latin American short story course and a Wabash student came to class. After the student spoke to the Wabash administration, Aguilar was invited to campus as visiting professor.
"Now I’m in my fifth year here. I always wanted to teach and write, but Wabash was never in my plans. I love both my teaching here and my writing. I don’t know which one I like best."
Aguilar is working on his third novel and has published poetry along with some essays. He is still very much a part of the writing world in Latin America. In January, his latest book was selected as the only one of 12 submissions presented to the Committee of Culture to be published. With his filming expedition to Ecuador this summer, Prof. Aguilar will also be conducting an Ecuadorian project where 14 Wabash students will take classes on literature and work there.
Barre is a freshman writer for Wabash College's student newspaper, The Bachelor.
Above right: Aguilar in the classroom.
Lower left: Pacheco