This month I was asked to write an interview for Cassia Cassitas about her new book, please read the interview and enter to win a book to read yourselves
1- What is the reason that made you write about special needs parenting in a fictional novel?
I believe in the power of upsetting examples. Looking at others’ journeys can help a reader find a way of coping with their own everyday darkness and despair. It acts like an elixir, restoring one’s vital energy and allowing people to live better.
2- The plot of the book that talks about the Olympic games and its chores, athletes, coaches, referees, volunteers, helpers and so on, is not a simple thing to do. Why did you decide to include it?
Most people do not even have the slightest idea of how many people, arrangements, and construction works are needed to make an Olympic Game event. Neither to achieve the podium. I thought it could inspire the passion for sports and “could facilitate the transformation of bodies, minds, and institutions, leading people to take the podium of life.” Mario’s dream is my own.
3- Andre goes through difficult situations to get what he wants. What is the secret of his success?
Purposely, Andre’s handicap is only mentioned in passing for most of the book. The parents refuse to let their son’s handicap become an issue or limit him in any way. When they encourage him to swim, play sports and cycle competitively, they teach him to focus in efficiency, despite his deficiency.
4- You talk about hope and attitude. How do you put it in your characters?
Someday I read that we are “a trigger-warning society“. It makes sense. We tend to hide disagreeable things and lock away unpleasant facts. Be they big or small, to face on adversities teaches us how to survive and move on. In the book, the characters discover pieces of not only themselves, but of their culture, the world culture and the culture of the Olympics, and its significance in representing the coming together of the world in celebration. I did it because I wanted to write something along the lines of: we can turn the game around.
5- Is there a specific ritualistic thing you do during your writing time?
It is funny to say that I don’t wear shoes while writing.
I write best in the morning. It is rather wonderful, as the solutions are ready in my first waking moments. Believe me, I wake up at three to write. It is quite magical how my brain works at dawn.
6- To finish up, tell us something you wrote without shoes at dawn.
“On my way through Ancient times, I brought some ornaments to decorate the landscape. Parties, bravery, backstage. I floated over the surface so that you could dive into the narrative and make it your own. Don’t be impressed by the exuberant events, the medals, the tragedies, and other components. They are just supporting roles in a story in which each character is a tribute to all those who choose to take a closer look, to write their own chapters, and explore the landscape.”