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An Interview with Olga Domingues Da Cunha

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I was born in Russia in a small town in the Kirov region. Ever since I was a child, I have loved creating something new.

In 2009, I graduated from school in a small village and moved to study in the center of the region. In 2014, I graduated from the university with a degree in Organization of Work with Youth.

After several years of working in different positions, I decided that I could no longer just keep dreaming that it was time to see the world.

In 2017, I went on a volunteer project to Romania for a year. In 2018, I spent six months in India. Returning to Russia, I continued to work in marketing and travel.

Currently I live in Portugal, trying to overcome childhood traumas and learn to appreciate the gift of creativity that life has given me.

Who/what made you want to write? Was there a particular person, or particular writers/works/art forms that influenced you?

I remember a moment in my childhood, when I was about 10 years old, I came up with my first poem. And from that moment on I knew that I loved writing.

Once at school, a teacher asked the children “what profession we will choose in the future.” I said that “I want to become a writer,” and in response I heard that “there is no such profession.” Since then, I knew that I loved to write, but there was no such profession.

It took me years of self-improvement and deep depression to realize that creativity is a gift that I have no right to ignore. This is unfair, at least not to myself.

If we talk about who I am grateful to, perhaps, for my depression, those people who helped me get into it, as well as those who helped me get out of it.

I realized that only when you’re at rock bottom you can truly experience what it means to be free.

What inspired you to start writing this book?

I remember how I was sitting at home and I really wanted to write a simple happy story that I would be interested in reading. I didn’t want to plant deep thoughts and conclusions. I just wanted to give this world a little more happiness.

As a result, the story turned out to be not saturated with happiness from cover to cover, but, it seems to me, very vital for a science fiction novel.

Tell us the story of your book’s title. Was it easy to find, or did it take forever?

The title of the book, Architect, came to mind with the first three paragraphs. I would even say that I fell in love with this name from the first thought.

To be honest, most often the title of each story comes to me at the very beginning and does not change.

If your book had a soundtrack, what are some songs that would be on it?

The most difficult question, because me and music are very distant things. I think I would include Miley Cyrus – “Used To Be Young” and a couple of Noize MC songs in the soundtrack playlist.

Describe your dream book cover.

Currently in the process of creating the book cover. The idea is like this:

A man in a gray suit looks at the TV screen, in which he sees himself. On the TV screen, he also looks at the TV screen, in which he sees himself, etc.

The further we look, the more the person dissolves.

What other professions have you worked in? What’s something about you that your readers wouldn’t know?

I worked a little as an event organizer, a lot of work with social projects. I’ve been working in marketing for the last eight years. Despite a lot of numbers and analytics, I consider my work very creative.

I think that readers should know that I write good poetry, but for now they remain in my notebook, and only people close to me become their listeners.

What books did you read (for research or comfort) throughout your writing process?

I’m inspired by the Harry Potter books (no matter how popular my answer may seem). I admire how she can show the reader how much happiness there is in life, despite all the pain. And, oh yes, her imagination is limitless.

I love reading classics in the style of Bulgakov and Bradbury; I find peace in fairy tales, and I adore The Little Prince.

Yes, perhaps fairy tales for those who have already grown up are my favorite books.

What is one thing you hope readers take away from reading your book? How do you envision your perfect reader?

Recently I was thinking that I see my reader as a poor intelligentsia in search of happiness.

I hope that the most important thing that the reader will find in my book is love, even in circumstances in which it is impossible.

Also, I want the reader to enjoy a good and simple story.

Are you a writer, too? Submit your manuscript to Atmosphere Press.

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