What inspired you to become an author?
I've always written as a form of catharsis, so becoming an author was really just a process of making that a little more disciplined and having an aim to it rather than just writing for the sake of it. I've always liked the Hemingway quote, "There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed."
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
I guess the overriding message is that perfect love stories don't really exist; people are flawed, relationships are too, but that doesn't detract from them. If anything, it makes it more special when two uniquely flawed people find each other through sheer luck and build a life together out of nothing at all. It's far more romantic to me than two perfect people being fated to be together. That almost just seems like living on autopilot.
What books/authors have influenced your life?
I'm never sure which writers I just love and which have actually influenced me. For example, Chuck Palanuik and Iain Banks are two of my favourites but I think it's probably better that their (wonderful) books don't directly influence my life! I also enjoy Siri Hustvedt, Paul Auster, Jeremy Dyson, and Oscar Wilde. I think they're the main ones that I read and re-read obsessively.
If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
I would love to be mentored by Oscar Wilde. Beauty and brutality always seem to be perfectly balanced in his work.
Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
I find stamina/dedication of staying with a single narrative, even for a short story, quite challenging. I jump from project to project a lot but with a book you have to sit and finish it.
Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
My favourite author changes constantly, I'm afraid. Jenni Fagan is probably the last author who really had an emotional impact on me with her book, The Panopticon.
What book are you reading now?
I jump between books too! At the moment I'm reading Stephen Fry's More Fool Me, Max Morkheimer's Critique of Instrumental Reason, and Paul Auster's The Winter Journal.
Do you have a song or playlist (book soundtrack) that you think represents this book?
I'd like to think Queen Adreena, Madraykin.
A Collection of Short Stories
Publisher: Wattle Publishing
Number of pages: 134
Love Bites is the debut collection of short stories by Valeria Kogan. From heartbreak to redemption, Love Bites provides a spellbinding interpretation of love and friendship, glamour and guilt, secrets and deceit. Each story provides a captivating insight into the world of love; its profound impact and effect; and how women relate to their partners.
This cleverly constructed collection of short stories will leave you tantalized and yearning for more.
About the Author:
Valeria Kogan was born in Russia and moved to the UK in 1991, where she developed her love of art and literature.
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