Where Readers & Writers Connect
Today, we’re doing things a little bit differently. One question. Joana, Thank you for visiting with us at Readers’ Realm. You know we believe writers must first be readers. Could you tell us a little about your experience in moving from reader to writer?
It was my eighth birthday when my awakening begun. The box in the shiny gift wrap paper sitting on the kitchen table called my name and I barreled towards it fully expecting that the latest Barbie would be encased inside waiting for me to rescue her. I ripped into the packaging whilst yelling an excited thank you to my older sister for the gift. My heart was pounding in anticipation. Yes, finally, Barbie would be mine.
Or so I thought. That day, I received my first assortment of classics adapted for children. The Three Musketers, David Copperfield, Huckleberry Finn, A tale of two Cities and the list goes on. I sulked for a few hours before opening the first book but when I did, I was hooked. Today, twenty one years later, I live surrounded by books from floor to ceiling. They’re everywhere, spilling out of bookcases, lying on tables and piled up in boxes and yes, I’ve read every one. After I ran out of space to live in, I decided to get a kindle. Perhaps that would make things better. Well, I no longer have to worry about storing books, but I’ve become an even worse bookaholic. In my opinion every story ever written deserves to be read so I lose sleep to give each a chance.
As a teenager, I always dabbled with writing stories but I figured I was never really good enough or dedicated enough to write a whole novel. Well, life long yearning is a powerful thing. I began to see stories all around me, imagining people’s lives in books and giving them fairy tell endings, so I decided to give it a try. Three books later, mission accomplished.
Writing a book is certainly harder than reading one and that’s probably why I spend more time reading than writing but once those juices get flowing my fingers fly over that keyboard with ease.
In my latest novel, I decided to use myself as a model for my female protagonist. That made things easy and hard at the same time. It was easy because who knows me better than me right? Well, the subject matter was a bit touchy for me and the girl reminded me of myself so much she disgusted me so that made it hard. However, I managed to piece together a decent story of love, betrayal, friendships and difficult decisions, things I know about first hand.
Now I guess I can be grateful that I didn’t get Barbie for my birthday. If only I had the time to read everything I want to read and write everything I want to write…