Is it possible to introduce oneself despite using a pseudonym? I believe it is. A person is far more than a name, a job and an age. We are our dreams, our experiences and our feelings. These are what make us unique.
I am fortunate to inhabit three entirely different worlds. The first is my everyday. Breakfasts, lunches, dinners and journeys to work. Responsibilities that intimidate. Dinners at friends' who never just don't know how much I care. Aggravation at work. Kids that make me cry with pride. Boring days. Sunny days at my balcony. Days of heavy rain and exhaustion dragging me down. And all these days drift into one until suddenly along comes a day I'll remember forever.
My second world is in all the books that I read. On my way to work on a bumpy, overcrowded train when I suddenly realize whodunnit. Or at home, under a blanket on the sofa, I imagine how it feels to long for the heartbeat of a lover. When I finally understand why orange is the new black. The amazing worlds other writers invite me into. Like when I searched the horizon for the dark rider of Mordor in The Lord of the Rings, terrified he would appear. Each of these worlds as real as my own.
My third is the one I own, my world. And I am here to share it with you. The world my characters live, love, fight and screw up in. The loved and the infuriating, the characters that come from me, but I can never be. Characters that go their own way but allow me to follow their adventures. Adventures that help me make sense of my first world.
I have always dreamed of becoming a writer. But as a young woman I was too restless. I longed for the world, for adventures and new experiences. So, I set off. To Europe and far-away countries; India, China, Pakistan, Iran and Thailand amongst others. Always with a notebook at hand. Starting one writing project after another. But all these exciting ideas where quickly abandoned and ended up in a pile on my desk. The persistence to pursue them had not yet been awakened.
Then it was time for studies, children and work. Time became scarcely. I wrote now and then when I could find the time. Still like before. Fragmentary, but an idea started to take shape. The book Tre dagar i September (Three days in September). The characters came to life one by one as the years went by.
As we all know, life offers both highs and lows. And we are all afraid of the dark and long-winded path that leads through fear, sadness and despair. But at the same time, these are challenges that can force us to develop. It was during a difficult period in my life that I finally gave myself time to write.
It wasn´t until a few years after I turned 50 that Tre dagar i September (Three Days in September) was completed. Shortly after I published Den som ger sig in i leken (Looking for Alice). A book that in the process of making has taught me about patience and accuracy. The first version was sloppy written and barely edited. Since I initially published it myself, as an indie-writer, I could improve and re-publish it as I learned more about storytelling. In the end, it became so well-written that I came to work with book publishers.
Writing is about letting go of creativity but also of controlling it. It´s about formulating the plots, characters, replicas and stories that emerge from within. It is also about making them understandable and interesting to others. To dare to delete that sentence you love when you realize that it does not move the story forward. But also dare to believe in yourself and trust your gut feeling. I am grateful for all the things I have learned, and I look forward to all the things I will learn in the years to come.