A Story of Many Songs (Book 1: Love)
Myla dreams of a boy who gives her an iPod. She wakes up with the iPod. She does not live on Earth. More
Eleanor & Parks meets Ender's Game in this thrilling, heart-throbbing story that puts a crazy spin on long-distance relationships, super-powers and music.
This is not your average dystopian love story. This book is not what you expect. It’s more.
I had a dream of a boy.
He was from Earth.
I am not.
He gave me an iPod.
I woke up holding an iPod.
I fell in love.
We had more dreams.
I would like to believe in this.
But I am out of time,
and they are after my life.
Where do you start to protect someone you love, when you can barely protect yourself?
A Story of Many Songs is LOVE, LOSS, PAIN & DESIRE.
This is LOVE.
Q: Your book features interesting scenery like floating houses, gigantic towers and glowing pyramidal monuments. Also, your world-building is never overdone. What inspired it?
A: The floating houses on the sea is probably one of the most beautiful images in the book in my own opinion. I think I was always fascinated by that picture and always wanted to include it in a novel of some sort. I'm glad I was able to do it in this book. Everything else came to form organically as I wrote the story and pondered over the characters. As a writer, things come to me pretty much pre-made and I just follow along by writing the story.
Q: A Story of Many Songs (Book 1:Love) is based on the idea of a long-distance relationship. Why did you choose to set most of the novella on another planet?
A: I wanted it to be a long-distance as possible. Just kidding. I love sci-fi. I love creating my own worlds and possibilities. Myla being on a different planet helps me enhance the story in ways that I could not if she was on Earth. The most crucial point of the story is her arrival to Earth. I must end her before I give away any spoilers.
Q: Okay. Now about race. Most readers approach a story, thinking that the characters are white by default. Authors often have to describe people of color to avoid the confusion. In your novella, Myla relates her own skin color to the color of cashew-nuts. What responsibility do you feel regarding your depictions of race in the story?
A: Our world is diverse, our cities are becoming more diverse year after year and it's true that a lot of books and movies have a long way to go to catch up. I can tell you that growing up black, I had a hard time identifying myself or people of my race in books and in cinema. If an author identifies a character as a person of color, or a mixed culture/race, I think it helps readers like me to at last identify with characters who are like us. Because everyone is flooded with images of white characters in the media.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, author of the book Half of a Yellow Sun, gave an amazing Ted Talk about the Danger of a Single Story where she speaks well on the issue of culture and race misrepresented in art and life. The single (one-sided) story makes people assume things about people and places (etc.) that are often not true or misunderstood. The same assumption goes to work when readers automatically picture characters as being white by default. There simply needs to be more diverse books that represent our diverse society.
Sadly, in the context of race, society is backed by a horrifying history of slavery and racial discrimination. Systemic injustice based on the color of our skin is part of today's culture too. I know. I wear a Black Lives Matter necklace myself. This same discriminative spirit has a subtle role in the lack of diversity in books and the misrepresentation of people of color. It's a broad topic and I could go on, but to speak for myself, I think for now we will have to let readers know what race characters are by describing where they are from, their accent/ebonics, the location setting of the book, and other such things. Why? There's no shortcut around this. The damage has been done and it will take time to change the perspective.
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