When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I am a physicist - so much of my time involves science. Right now I am working on a statistical study of planet near-resonances in exoplanetary systems. I am also a martial artist and I'm doing all I can to stay fit by training daily. Other things I enjoy to do - reading, photography, music, board strategy games (especially shogi and go).
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
The unknown that lies in front of me and the chance to continue evolving as a human being.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I used to write some stories since childhood, but probably one of the first worth reading was a one-page story in Romanian with the title "Meditație" ("Meditation").
What is your writing process?
In most cases, when I write something down, I am not completely sure wether it's me writting the story or the story writting me. An idea usually comes from much reading combined with a sudden inspiration. Then, after the draft is finished, it takes a while to brush up the contents to the desired level.
How do you approach cover design?
I make my own covers from my own photographs or digital art creations. It is also a matter of inspiration and I try to connect the cover with the story.
What do you read for pleasure?
I enjoy good books of any kind. But I tend to read more often science fiction or classical literature and poetry.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Typically I use a search engine after reading interesting reviews online on literature sites or after having them recommended by my friends.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
The first book I have ever read was "Captain at 15" by Jules Verne at age 7. It certainly had some influence on me, but other stories and novels I read in the years to come made a much stronger impression. Including "20 000 Leagues under the Sea" by the same Jules Verne or "Gulliver's Travels" by Jonathan Swift or "Alice in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking Glass" by Lewis Caroll. Lewis Caroll had probably the strongest influence on me, as his two main works remained until today among my favorites. Books that influenced me strongly as I grew up were "The Magic Mountain" by Thomas Mann, "The Idiot" by Feodor Dostoievsky or "Musashi" by Eiji Yoshikawa.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
I have a long list of favorite books (and authors), but I will mention below only a few: "Alice in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking Glass" by Lewis Caroll - because every time I read the story I see it with different eyes and from a different prospective "The Magic Mountain" by Thomas Mann - because it shows the limitless possibilities of human evolution "The Disposessed" by Ursula K. Le Guin - because it presents a realistic view of a physicist's life's purpose.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
For the time being I use a Nook most of the time, but during the night, with the lights off, I sometimes read from an Ipad.
What are you working on next?
I have some short stories and a collection of poems. I am also planning to write a sequel to "The Other Shore".
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