Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Author Interview: Sonya Solomonovich: A Russian Beauty Who Has Fallen In Love With Vancouver

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SonyaSolomonovich looks more like a film star because of her vibrant beauty and sharp features. She is a freelance writer and aspiring novelist. But before putting up these hats she has many more to showcase. She has been a teacher, an editor and a journalist. In between these two journey streams she thought of acquiring another hat which didn't sort out. She thought of becoming a fitness instructor (being super fit herself) but then it came out to her that there is something beyond that is waiting for her. Writing is her passion along with her another favorite pastime – seafaring. If you don’t find her writing, or seafaring; the next best place to find her is a martial arts studio or a local spa (or a place that is mix of both).

Sonya loves interacting with people as passionately as writing novels. Welcome Sonya on board and thanks for giving an opportunity to interact with you. Let us start a brief interaction to know you in your own words!

Your real name and pen name?

When I was younger, I used "Sonya Solo" for my journalistic writing because I thought my real name was too unwieldy. But I've come to be proud of my real name, so now I sign all my books as Sonya Solomonovich.


If you had to live a day of your life as one of the living or dead personality, who would it be and why?

I wouldn't mind living a day as Jacques Cousteau because I love observing marine animals, especially dolphins, in the wild.

What is your favorite genre and why?

I have to say comedy. Though I usually describe myself as liking to read and write historical or swashbuckling adventure, I usually gravitate to the light-hearted stuff rather than the dark or "edgy." I will read anything that's funny.


What is the purpose of your writing?

Good question! In my writing, my main purpose is to present a positive and hopeful view of the world. This doesn’t mean that my novels are purely escapist. I hope my novels will entertain but also inspire the reader to be the hero rather than the victim in real life. This is what reading adventure stories has always done for me.


Which of your work published so far?



I've just published my first novel, Dryad. The main character is Solena, a dryad (a supernatural forest creature) who goes undercover in a human corporation in order to protect the forest. She discovers that the corporation is planning to travel back in time and cut down the forest in order to circumvent environmental laws. 

It's a time travel story, so there's some satire of modern society as well as swashbuckling adventures in the 17th century with pirates, Jesuit priests, and supernatural beings. In this book, I wanted to create a bevy of supporting characters who are each very interesting and touching in their own way.


It’s also a romance story as the dryad tries to figure out whether she loves the smooth-talking Rodney Love, heir to the Timber Corporation, or her long-time friend Anastacio, a wild dryad of the rainforest.

My other book, published last year, is Very Much Alive. It's a romance novella that takes place in Los Angeles. The story is about a wealthy older man who collects antiques and wants to find a cultured woman who will appreciate his collection, but instead he falls in love with an exotic dancer. I don’t usually write purely romance books, but this one demanded to be written, especially after my visit to Los Angeles, where I saw the amazing Getty Museum and its art collection. I could picture my characters interacting there, and in other locations around LA. 

What are your future plans?
I can't imagine a future without writing, so I know another novel is on the horizon. I would also like to learn more about documentary filmmaking. I always want to tell stories, in one way or another.

Your origin of birth and other countries you have visited/ stayed. What best things you liked in these countries around the globe?
I was born in Russia and have been living in Canada for most of my life, though I also studied in Europe for a couple of years. I especially enjoyed Italy and Ireland. I studied for a year in Dublin, Ireland, where I got my MA degree. What I liked about Ireland is it has a long-standing literary tradition and rich history. What I liked about Italy is that you don’t have to go very far in search of adventure… or trouble! It felt a bit dangerous but exciting. Currently, I’m living in Vancouver, Canada, my favorite city in the world. It’s on the Pacific Ocean, so I can go on frequent surfing adventures.

Your favorite book and why?
Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman is one of my top favorites. It’s an epic story about Armageddon, but it’s told in a very humorous way so it’s also epically silly. I just love the huge scope of its ideas and how funny it is in satirizing modern society. 

It’s about an angel and a demon who are trying to stop Armageddon from happening. They have come to realize that if either God or Satan achieves complete victory, life will just be too boring.



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Swashbuckling in the 21st Century