I am really glad you’ve accepted my interview. Thank you so much for taking the time to answer my questions.
Thank you so much for the opportunity, and the pleasure is all mine.
Can you tell us a bit more about how you became a writer?
I worked as a translator for many years and I wanted to work on literary projects but it never panned out. I have always read a lot and wondered if I had it in me to write a novel. I began to take classes and read and write every day, I joined writing groups and began to write short stories. In the back of my mind a story formed about a woman who suffers from post-partum depression and I just knew I had to write a novel about it.
Was it difficult for the first book to find a publisher?
Once I found an agent—I must have queried hundreds—the publisher followed pretty soon after, actually in a matter of days. The path to publishing is different for every writer and in no way related to one’s talent. Perseverance is key, in my opinion, that and a great story.
Could you describe literature in three words?
That’s a difficult one. Personally, literature has given me so much ever since I was a child, and all throughout my life, and I can’t imagine not reading or not having read and when I meet people who don’t, I feel this pang of sadness, wishing they knew what they were missing. On a personal level, literature is a way to lead a thousand lives. Those would be my three words. Literature allows us to feel, encounter, and experience so much more beyond one’s own life. It’s magical, really.
Is there a book you would never read? Why?
I think any of the 50 Shades books are not something I’m interested in.
What’s your favorite book?
There are many and most of all, they change over the years. If I had to pick one, my favorite one—because it is the first book I remember reading and it making a huge impact on me—would be The Little Girl Who Lives Down the Lane by Laird Koenig. I read it as a teenager and it’s about a 13-year-old girl who lives alone in a house, and murders people who threaten her solitary life. It was not a female character I had encountered before and I was completely blown away by her.
My favorite quote is by Sandra Cisneros, The House on Mango Street: “Not a flat. Not an apartment in back. Not a man’s house. Not a daddy’s. A house all my own. With my porch and my pillow, my pretty purple petunias. My books and my stories. My two shoes waiting beside the bed. Nobody to shake a stick at. Nobody’s garbage to pick up after. Only a house quiet as snow, a space for myself to go, clean as paper before the poem.”
I love it for many reasons, one of them is that it speaks to everything I’ve ever felt I wanted my life to be since I was a child. I love it as a writer because it is simple in its language and therefore powerful, breaks from grammatical correctness, and there’s poetry in the voice of the narrator—a girl with a convincing voice written by a sophisticated writer.
EBooks or paper print?
There’s room for both. I enjoy the feeling of holding a book in my hands, but there’s so much to be said about carrying an entire library with me on a trip. I don’t think we have to decide on either-or, it’s both.
What inspires you?
I feel compelled to come up with a single word, like tenacity, or truth, or conviction, but those don’t ring true. If inspiration is the process of mental stimulation igniting a spark to something creative, then inspiration, to me, is everywhere. It is powerful because it happens at the strangest moments, startles you almost, like a deer dashing into the road in front of you. Birds on a wire, being around people who, figuratively, speak your language, a good book, a movie, a hike in the woods, anything, really. If you open your eyes and see the magic in everything, everything is inspiration. I hope that makes sense.
Imagine you were given the opportunity to meet a book character in real life. Who would that be?
He is a legend, for one. His deductive reasoning and brain power, drawing conclusions a thousand times faster than other average brains, as intimidating as it seems, I imagine to be very interesting.
What’s your worst nightmare?
In a very Victorian, melodramatic way, my worst nightmare is to suffer from an undiagnosable disease and to waste away and ultimately die.
The best decision of your life was?
To leave my country of origin and come to America. As difficult as the fate of the country is at this point, the spirit of what America stands for shines bright.
I can’t wait to read your next book. Are you currently working on a project? Is there a release date to be revealed?
My second book, The Good Daughter was published in 2017 and my third novel will be released in early 2020. I’m working on number four.
Thank you so much for the opportunity to be interviewed. Bloggers are amazing people!