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INTERVIEW WITH MARIA KARAMANOU

GENRE: mystery-thriller, romantic and action

Her book is simply product of her imagination somewhere deep down in her subconscious. The story came little by little. Moment by moment. This novel began, months ago, and she gave a voice to two main characters. A voice she wanted to explore further, though she didn’t quite know how. she gave them a voice to show how life can change you, what family means to each and everyone of us and most importantly how love can change us. Shape us into something strange even scary sometimes. Things just evolved from there, not according to any plan, but mostly by trial and error, until the outline of a story began to emerge, and at that point she was just following along, wondering herself how it would all turn out.



JDBOOKS has the privilege of an interview with author Marylion The Bridge of Fire Novel.


Where do you live and is that the setting for your novel?

I live on an island in the Eastern Mediterranean called Cyprus. It’s the third largest and third most populous island in the Mediterranean. My novel’s setting is abroad, in a village which is in England. The village is called Snowshill.


Your novel is a mystery-thriller-action and romantic story. What drew you to the genre?

I used to bury myself in mystery-thriller, romantic and action books - as many as I could read as often as possible. So, naturally, I tend to gravitate towards those genres predominantly as my genre of choice. I guess, it just came natural to me to write in those genres, stories flowed easily from my mind. Those genres never failed to amaze me.



Do you think writers need to feel strong, loving emotions in order to write a romantic novel?

I believe that writers need to put theirselves in the character's shoes, imagine how he/ she feels, write that, try to evoke emotions in the reader. It helps if we have ever in our life experienced something similar, so we have a reference point. After all, writing is about imagination. It isn’t and cannot be about making ourselves physically go through what our character is going through. For one thing, that would be extremely limiting. For sure, writers need to have some experience, I can’t write about love if I haven’t experience at least a little what love is, and how someone feels.



In one of my blog pieces, I discuss how to approach writing a novel, but it is mainly targeted towards those who want to write fantasy novels. What advice would you give someone on how to approach writing a romantic novel?

The advice I would give on how to approach writing a romantic love will be simple. You can find the main story, the characters but never write something that has been told before, people and in general readers want to see new and fresh things. Common plots turn up so often that they become tiresome, and they weaken your story’s impact. Another thing that I want to add is that you shouldn’t rush love, you should just let it come.Romance novels are all about the journey. There needs to be excitement, disaster, happiness, and anger. In short, a roller coaster of emotions. If your lovers fly into one another’s arms at the very beginning, then you’ve missed a vital component of your story. Tension! You have to slowly build the suspense, readers actually WANT anticipation and drama.



Which of your characters is most like you? And why?

The main characters of my novel are two sisters. I think I have in my character aspects from both of them. The two sisters have contradictory characters, but aren’t we all a little contradictive most of the times? Both characters are complex, they both have loyalty, wisdom. I can say that each sister has something that lacks from the other. They complete each other, making ONE complete person together. 



Have any of the characters in The bridge of Fire been influenced by TV or movie figures? If so, which one(s)?

JDBOOKS has the privilege of an interview with author Marylion The Bridge of Firebe? My characters were not influenced by any tv or movie figures but I can say that they were inspired by real people. There are times I meet someone for a brief time, maybe a couple hours, and their personality impresses me enough to create a fictional character about them. Obviously I am adding my own attributes to the fictional character, they can even have aspects from other people in their personality. I don’t make perfect characters with an amazing personality simply because it’s not real, everyone has flaws even if they may look perfect.



If you could give your younger self some advice about the writing process, what would it be?

To my younger self I would say many things but most importantly I would say for sure revise. Our story can change a great deal during this stage. Have we given our readers all the information they need to make sense of our story? If not, we have to go back to our notebook that we kept for additional scenes and any additional details. It’s also important to rearrange. I would say to my younger self to consider the flow, pacing and sequencing of my story. Would the plot be better served if some of the events occur in a different order?



What time do you usually start writing and what do you find the hardest part about the writing process?

I start writing whenever I feel like it, it could be early in the morning or at midnight or even at 3 in the night. I don’t have a specific time for writing, although if I could choose I would say that I prefer writing in the night. As for what I find harder, the ideas aren't the hard bit. They're a small component of the whole. Hardest by far is the process of simply sitting down and putting one word after another to construct whatever it is you're trying to build, making it interesting, making it new. It’s hard to create a whole new world, whole new characters without losing your mind in the process.



How has writing changed you?

Writing is therapeutic. 

We all drive ourselves crazy with excessive thinking at times. But when you put your thoughts into words, they become less scary. When you write down what scares you, you will automatically work on a solution. Sometimes the solution is acceptance. But you need to write those things down first. Writing improved my self-knowledge. Nothing helped me to get to know myself more than translating my thoughts into words. When I forced myself to write every day, I automatically became more aware of my thoughts. Writing helped me become a better persuader. Writing is nothing more than persuading the reader with words. But my tools are limited, I can only use words to tell a story.






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