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Written by JJ Barnes
I interviewed Domnica Radulescu about her life and the experiences that inspired her to write her memoir, Dream In A Suitcase.
Tell me a bit about who you are.
I am a Romanian American writer of fiction, non-fiction, a playwright and theater maker, an educator, a mother, a swimmer, a world citizen.
When did you first WANT to write a book?
For as long as I know myself.
When did you take a step to start writing?
Before I could even write. I created my first poem at 5 years old.
How long did it take you to complete your first book from the first idea to release?
My first book was my doctoral dissertation, and it took me about two years counting all the research, writing, and revising. My first novel took me about 4 years from the start of the first draft to its publication.
How long did it take you to complete your latest book from the first idea to release?
My latest book is my memoir Dream in a Suitcase. The Story of an Immigrant Life, which is also my fifteenth book overall. It took me about four years from the start of the first draft to its publication this January.
Focusing on your latest release. What made you want to write Dream In A Suitcase?
The necessity to process and craft the pieces of my life that have been touched by my exilic experience into one cohesive and aesthetically engaging work of art.
What were your biggest challenges with writing Dream In A Suitcase?
Exposing my life in all its highs and lows and allowing myself to be vulnerable in front of the whole wide world.
What was your research process for Dream In A Suitcase?
Since it is a memoir, it involved periods of intense searching through my memories, as well as going back in time and space on various traces of my life.
How did you plan the structure of Dream In A Suitcase?
I crafted my book following the thread of my immigrant experience and the flow of my memory, starting with the day of my escape from the Communist dictatorship of Romania to Italy, and subsequently to the United States, in a constant back and forth between my Romanian past and my American life.
Did you get support with editing, and how much editing did Dream In A Suitcase need?
Yes, I did as always with all my books, I go through a lot of rewrites and edits. And the book was professionally edited.
What is the first piece of writing advice you would give to anyone inspired to write a book?
To first search in their hearts and ask themselves why they wish to write and why the story they wish to share with the world is important and of interest. And very importantly to read a lot of great literature and know their field really well.
Can you give me a hint about any further books you’re planning to write?
Writing is my most significant occupation and I always have new writing projects. I am working on the last draft of my fourth novel, My Father’s Orchards, a historical thriller inspired by my father’s experiences during World War II. And I am also working on a collection of essays of immigrant art written during the years of the pandemic.
And, finally, are your proud of your accomplishment? Was it worth the effort?
Yes, of course, I cannot imagine my life without writing. For me writing is not just what I do, but who I am and what gives meaning to my life. It is always worth it.
Pop all your book, website and social media links here so the readers can find you:
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