My guest today is Bulgarian author Borislava Borissova. Although she has been working as a Recruiter in the field of Human Resources for years, in her free time, history and writing are the important passions of her life. Her young adult fantasy The Starlight Prince became her first published book in 2010. Affairs of The Heart is her second published book. It comprises of two love dramas: “The Last Secrets of The Ancient Island” and “A Love In A Time of Wars”.
Anne – Welcome to my little corner of cyberspace, Borislava. Being able to chat with someone who lives half way around the world is such fun! Now that we’re settled and comfortable, let’s talk writing. Would you tell us a something about yourself you’d normally only share with close friends?
Borislava - I normally do not share some of my dreams. I dream having my own wings to fly over lakes and mountains, falls, steppes and canyons or swim over the Great Barrier Reef along dolphins and kit babies. I also would love to enjoy time traveling if it was possible and to see as a flash what would happen with my native Milky Way Galaxy, with the Sun after thousands of light years. I want to know what the Solar System was when our world was just created and a little after it, when the world was very young what everything on Earth looked like.
Anne - When did you first realize you were destined to be an author?
Borislava - I have never lived with the thought “I can do this”. In my case, it is always the sense “I need to write, I want to write.” For me the most challenging is "to write or not to write"; "to start a new book or never start a new book"... such moments always can happen because nothing ends with the end of the creation of a story. The author must put tremendous efforts to overcome all obstacles on the road to the readers. Writing is not an easy process but finding a publisher, marketing and promotion of the book to touch readers is no simpler at all.
Anne – I agree on both points. The inner critique is always tossing out suggestions to get this writer sidetracked, and as for finding a publisher, etc. that can become a full-time job. Would you share an excerpt from Affairs of The Heart with us?
Borislava – Certainly! This is from the novella “The Last Secrets of The Ancient Island”:
“I wanted to see the face, to look into the eyes of the dangerous driver who scared us with his crazy driving, caused a series of collisions and accidents on our streets and placing the life of each of us in danger and uncertainty. I still remember the squeal of the high-speed tires and the sense of an evil menace and I wanted to rage at him, to strike him. I expected…” Michael sighed sadly and, forgetting everything and everyone around him, he lapsed into the memory of that time.
“In the hospital, I ran up the stairs and I looked in the room to peer over medic’s shoulder. There were a multitude of tubes and wires. The intravenous system and respirator were attached to the body in the bed, to keep the driver alive. I saw the ashen skin, dark rings around the eyes, fragile hands—they were already powerless to hold the wheel. The body was worn, similar to a shadow. It was a young woman who wanted to die, who searched for death on the road as fast as the car would go. And to take another life with hers so she wouldn’t be alone when she drew her last breath.”
This is from the novella “A Love In Time of War”, also from Affairs of The Heart:
After a while, the older white-haired man repeated in amazement, “Let’s clear this up. You fought to the death in the Balkan War against her father, her brother and her country. And she served as a nurse to Bulgarian soldiers, among blood, wounded, dead, and the smell of formaldehyde on the opposite side of the borderline. Does it mean you are coming to ask for the hand of your enemy’s daughter? The Bulgarian general, who personally led his army from the front line against the Ottoman divisions?”
“Yes. First there was the war… the love followed later. Peace was somewhere in between.”
“Yesterday, you could have killed her on the other side of the front, today you are in love and what about tomorrow?”
“She feels the same way. All our efforts to remain enemies appeared to be in vain. The border line between our ability to hate or to love appears a thin one.”
His fellow traveler shook his head distrustfully. “Your story sounds crazy. Most probably, her father will not allow her to marry you. Hmm… Kidnap her instead. Escape together as others have done many times on the Balkans.”
“Who would easily marry a Muslim man and a Christian woman in secret? If not, what would she be in my life without a legal marriage? A mistress? The woman who was born to be my wife? I cannot make a political scandal between our countries. The general is respectful and popular.”
Anne – Thank you! Let’s talk about the place where the muse is at work. Describe your home office as appears right now. Is this a good or bad thing?!
Borislava - My home is very simple, actually I am used to working on an open window with noise of buses, cars, steps and voices of many walking people, but sometimes I dream to lay on green meadow with butterflies, ladybirds, turtles, foxes, hedgehogs, wild flowers, watch the endless sky and writing about love.
Anne - How many rejections did you acquire along the way to publication, and what kept you going?
Borislava - I am sure people, who are interested in being writers know much about the whole process. But I have something to say: don’t believe in rejection letters! You may write a nice story and if someone, if many ones – agents, publishers etc. - reject it, don’t give up your thirst for writing. When one loves to do something - to climb mountains up, to swim, to play soccer or to write - he or she just does it because of the pleasure and despite the result. Each swimmer does not go to the pool or sea, or ocean because she/he would become an Olympic Champion. Of course, there is also the thought about success in everyone.
Anne - What is the hardest part of writing for you?
Borislava - The most terrible thing for every author in my opinion is the importance of the beginning chapter, the first few lines. It is very nice to write a story in the way I want but I cannot stop putting myself in the shoes of the readers and asking: “Will it be interesting to others? Will they go ahead with the text after reading the first chapter?”
Another hard moment is the blurb. At the end you should say the whole story, for which you needed hundred pages, in a few words only.
Anne – Getting that first scene is crucial for me, too. I will often write 20-25 variations on the same theme and refuse to proceed until I get it “right”! Where can readers find you online?
Anne – Thank you for visiting today, Borislava, and sharing an excerpt of Affairs of The Heart.
Readers, as always, your comments are welcome and appreciated. Become a follower to ensure you receive every author interview, announcement and/or blog post. Until next time, happy reading! J
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