1. What was the inspiration for your novel?
The Book was actually conceived as a process of a Saint Guide I wanted to make with a friend; I had this idea to talk about Patron Saints and their causes in a comprehensible and casual tone.
What actually happened is glimpses of Julianna started picking at my brain; my friend Adriana encouraged me to go home and write it and that was the beginning of “Borrowing my Mother’s Saints”
2. When did you take up writing?
I remember it was around Easter of 2011, this I remember because I checked the sermon of the day for one of the moments when Julie enters a church.
3. How important is setting/place in your writing?
I think the place and setting have a way of touching characters, in their traits, customs and mind frame. In Juliana’s case I thought Manhattan gave the vibe for the type of life that will have her running around with little time to stop and
4. Do you have a favourite character (s) in your current novel?
Stella, Julie’s mom is one of my favourite characters as she provides the constant support, love and courage that will be the foundation for her. My next one would be Sister Gertrude who challenged her comfort zone and was not afraid to
call her a “coward” even from the grave to make her point.
5. What’s the best piece of writing advice you were ever given?
It was actually when I had the manuscript in my hard drive for a long time; when a friend (Becky) pushed me to self-publish saying “You not only have to continue writing because of the joy it brings you. You have to publish so other people can read it and you can touch their lives, it’s the dream of every artist. Don’t let fear stop you.”
6. Do you have a schedule for writing?
I don’t, but I should. I generally work around my kids’ schedule, but strive to at least two or three days sit in front of the computer.
7. Are you a plotter or someone who tends to wing it?
I’m a mixture of both! I have the idea of the story and how it’s going to develop and end. But I start each chapter with a general mental outline and let it speak to me from there.
8. Can you name three of four of your current favourite books?
Twenties Girl by Sophie Kinsella.
The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
Something Blue by Emily Giffin.
The Paris Wife by Paula McLain.
(Monique interjects to say she love, love, loved The Language of Flowers too!)
9. Can you tell me a little bit about what you are working on now?
I’m working on the story of a woman who loses the love of her life at sixty and considers her life meaningless without him, only to find many unexpected surprises and events along the way.
10. What advice would you give to a fledgling writer to assist them on their journey?
I think my own journey is just starting but I would say “Try to remember each day the joy writing brings you and from that place expect great things”
Borrowing My Mother's Saints
by Olga G Soaje
Published: September 2012
Genre: Contemporary Romance (Chick lit)
Interwoven with humor, romance and vital inspiration, Olga Soaje’s novel takes readers on a dazzling journey through the sudden unraveling of one woman’s life on her quest towards happiness.
With a plum job at Nelson and Nelson ad agency, a Manhattan apartment, and a boyfriend named Michael who looks good enough on paper, Julianna is at the peak of her game. That’s when everything starts going south fast. Nancy, her nemesis at work with a fake smile (and other body parts!), has somehow stolen her account. Her boss, Peter, deems her burned out and sends her out the door with her cardboard box. And that’s just the beginning of the rapid-fire onslaught of serious woes.
After Michael dumps her squarely, her mom is diagnosed with breast cancer. Julianna is officially at her wit’s end. However, just as she’s in the deepest despair, enter a cast of characters that Julianna hasn’t seen since her childhood days at home and in her Catholic grade school. Tucked away in her mother’s recipe box is a bounty of saints cards, and soon, those the saints come marching in to represent a source of strength her mother had found in them and a way to develop other career paths she had not considered on her road to happiness. Julianna is greeted with new opportunities, for better and sometimes for worse, that help her forge her own road to a richer, more authentic life.
Links to purchase the book
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I am a writer of light-hearted contemporary women's fiction.
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