Lara Norgaard

My translations of fiction and literary non-fiction. I work with Portuguese, Spanish, and Indonesian.

  • Fruit Maps by Rio Johan in Asymptote Journal

    Translated from the Indonesian

    July 2023

    Composed in an absurdist vein, Rio Johan’s short story collection Genetically Modified Fruit follows the Bio Corporation, a company dedicated to engineering the most expensive, most desirable, and most exotic fruits on the market. Each story in the compilation approaches the Corporation from a different angle, be it the story of a single fruit with unusual—and disturbing—qualities, or that of the Corporation’s collaboration with the Last Dictator on Earth. In the case of “Fruit Maps,” the short story I translated for Asymptote Journal, readers follow the tale of a drunk and irreverent engineer’s blind creativity, which is co-opted by the Bio Corporation for financial gain.

    • fruit maps
  • 24 Hours with Gaspar by Sabda Armandio

    Translated from the Indonesian

    May 2023

    My English translation of the Indonesian novel 24 Hours with Gaspar by Sabda Armandio, awarded a 2021 PEN/Heim Translation Grant and published by Seagull Books.From the judges’ citation: “A wicked blend of noir, science fiction, and satire, 24 Hours with Gaspar tells the story of a private eye–cum-criminal named Gaspar, who plans to rob a jewelry store in Jakarta in order to acquire a black box of mysterious powers. This story is told using three different perspectives: Gaspar’s own; transcriptions of police interviews; and the almost scholastic narration of Arthur Harahap, a kind of 'supra-meta-heteronym,' who assembles the events of the crime from a distant future." Read an excerpt in Words Without Borders:

    • Gaspar
  • Mundo Nuevo: Anti-Communism in Latin American literature, as seen from Indonesia by Ronny Agustinus in História da Ditadura

    Translated from the Indonesian

    Jun 2022

    In this essay, Indonesian writer, editor, and literary translator Ronny Agustinus considers the interconnected history of cultural violence in Latin America and Indonesia through the expansive history of US intervention. Analyzing the topic through the optic of accountability, Agustinus asks: how have authors who collaborated with CCF-backed publications reacted when news of CIA links broke? What was the critical response in Latin America, compared to Indonesia? What are the ideological underpinnings of denial, and what political agenda does the stance of not-knowing serve? My English translation and a Portuguese translation of my work by Victor Traldi were published through the Brazilian public initiative História da Ditadura.

  • "Toward the Earth that Will Remain" and "Garden of Begonias" by Cristina Judar in Cuíer (Two Lines Press)

    Translated from the Portuguese

    Sept 2021

    "This far-reaching, bilingual assortment of fiction, poetry, nonfiction, and photography—erotic and personal, revolutionary, hopeful, joyous, and bitter—continues the legacy of defiant queer expression in Brazil and demands its prolific, unapologetic future."

    • cuier
  • Writing Orang-orang Oetimu, Writing Wounds by Felix Nesi in Asymptote Blog

    Translated from the Indonesian

    Mar 2020

    "Once I managed to accept that those stories had been invented, I started to enjoy writing. When else would I be allowed to lie to people like that?"

    • oetimu2
  • Hélio Oiticica in Manhattan by Silviano Santiago in Asymptote Journal

    Translated from the Portuguese

    July 2019

    "The nests enabled a collaborative space where the most daring experiences were created with words and other lethal weapons. The space was human, excessively human."

    • helio oiticica
      Artwork by Mirza Jaafar
  • São Gabriel and its Demons by Natalia Viana in Asymptote Journal

    Translated from the Portuguese

    Jan 2019

    Why does the most indigenous city in Brazil also have the highest suicide rates in the country?

    • sao gabriel
      Artwork by Feliciano Lana
  • Anna O. by Ricardo Lísias in Asymptote Journal

    Translated from the Portuguese

    July 2018

    "And what about Anna O.?"

  • Dead Girls by Selva Almada in Asymptote Journal

    Translated from the Spanish

    Jan 2018

    "Andrea stayed with me for more than twenty years. She came back with the news of each dead woman."