I am Polish by origin, but have lived in London all my life. I’ve always loved reading – I was a real book nerd as a child and spent many a half term in the kids’ corner of Waterstone’s making my way through the shelves. (My dad was a bookseller and I was allowed two new books a week, provided I was on my best behaviour.) I always secretly dreamt of writing my own book, and as I grew older I became fascinated by modern Polish history, so I decided that’s what I wanted to focus on in my writing. ‘The Walls Came Down’ is my first published book.
What inspires you to write?
I was inspired to write by all of the great authors I've read over the years. My favourite writers are those who use a historical setting and have a person story at the centre, like Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie or Khaled Hosseini.
Tell us about your writing process.
I usually don't plan my plot in advance – I start writing and see what happens, which of course means lots of editing later on. I often write when I'm travelling on the tube or bus, in the 'notes' app on my phone. Then I email it all to myself and try to put it together into a good structure.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I don't talk to my characters, but I do often say their dialogue aloud to check that it actually sounds like them.
Who are your favorite authors?
There are lots! I love Maggie O'Farrell, Patrick Ness, Nick Hornby and Zadie Smith, but also some of the classics by Harper Lee and John Steinbeck. I've recently loved Hanya Yanagihara's 'A Little Life'. I was completely engrossed in the lives of the characters – it's an incredible novel. I haven't cried so much over a book in years.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I was lucky enough to find an interested publisher, having entered my book into a competition, but there are so many different routes to publication. It's worth researching them all before you commit. Competitions and prizes are always a good place to start though.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I think that readers won't give up on the printed book. It's still such a nice feeling to hold a physical book in your hand, so I hope (fingers crossed) that bookshops won't disappear entirely and that the world of reading won't become entirely digital.
What genres do you write?
What formats are your books in?
All information is provided by the author and is presented as it was submitted so you the reader get to hear the author’s own “voice” in their interview.