Dark, heart-wrenching and deeply anticipated. There was a lot of talk about the book before it even came out. Katya Apekina talks about The Deeper the Water the Uglier the Fish.
For those of us who are not familiar with you yet – tell us a little about yourself!
I’m a novelist, short story writer, screenwriter and translator. I was born in Moscow, and immigrated to the U.S. when I was 3 years old. I lived a pretty nomadic lifestyle in my 20’s—New York, New Orleans, St. Louis, and finally Los Angeles. There was something very exciting about the idea of abandoning everything and starting all over again in a new apartment, in a new city. In each new place I could imagine the different directions that my life could take. I feel less of that impulse now that I’m writing fiction because I have the freedom to imagine all those other lives without the hassle of having to live them. I’ve been in one place (Los Angeles) for a while now. I don’t know that any place will ever be Home with a capital H, but it’s home enough. I live here with my husband, radio journalist David Weinberg, and my 4-year-old daughter.
Congratulations on the release of The Deeper the Water the Uglier the Fish! It’s barely been a month — how has the past few weeks been for you?
The past few weeks have been crazy and exciting. I loved seeing friends at my readings who I haven’t seen in years, sometimes decades. It’s been fun to connect…
Born and raised in Australia by Finnish parents, a lot of Maria Takolander’s writing reflects the hardships of the post-war Finland that has been passed down to her; heritage and history is the focal point.
Takolander’s writing settles a specific feeling into the reader: the feeling of the universe stretching backward and forward, lending you its eyes, one text at a time. It leaves you with a sense of having the secrets of the world whispered into your ear. She provides a kaleidoscope of perspectives as she inhabits the viewpoint of a wide range of diverse characters; anyone from Joseph Stalin or a war-ravaged veteran, to children or expecting mothers. Her writing is dark, sometimes strange, and endlessly captivating. She is the author of several collections, Ghostly Subjects (2009), The Double and Other Stories (2013) and The End of the World (2014) being a few. In addition to being a writer, Takolander is also a mother, a scholar and an educator.
Upon contacting her, I expected a mysterious and gloomy, vague sort of author — but that vision was soon diminished. Takolander greets me warmly and enthusiastically, her bright and kind personality a stark contrast to her dark writing.
You have quite the CV in regards to publications; do you remember what it felt like when you…
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