Marieke Nijkamp was born and raised in the Netherlands. A lifelong student of stories, language, and ideas, she is more or less proficient in about a dozen languages and holds degrees in philosophy, history, and medieval studies. She is a storyteller, dreamer, and globe-trotter.
Thanks Marieke for taking out time for this interview.
Is your life in some way expressed through your work?
Hm, not specifically? I think my life experience and my world view definitely filter through in the way I write. I tell stories about things I’m interested in or fascinated by, and as such, it’s always going to be informed by who I am as a person. I think that’s a given. But I’m not writing about my own life. I’m writing to give voice to and understand all the stories I see around me.
Can someone who reads your novel get a glimmer of who you are as a person?
Possibly if they know me very well? But if they don’t… probably not? That’s hard for me to judge! But quite like I just mention, my novels aren’t about me, they’re about my characters first and foremost.
If a movie is to be made using the moments of your Writer’s Journey, what the movie will look like?
With lots of agonized staring at my computer, gallons of coffee, and a great community of friends and various events. I love conventions and conferences for precisely that reason!
What are your pet peeves?
In stories? Characters who keep secrets from one another without a good reason. Just talk to each other!
If you can save only one book in a burning library, which book will you save and why?
THIS IS THE WORST MENTAL IMAGE. Burning libraries are a nightmare! But provided we’re not talking about libraries with the collected treasures of old… hm, I think it would still depend on what was in there. But either the most memorable book (as in, special edition or as a memoriam of some event) or the most well-loved, which in my case, would probably be Tonke Dragt’s SECRETS OF THE WILD WOOD.
Which are the social concerns you addressed in your novel—This is Where It Ends?
Well obviously it’s a book that deals with a lot of things. School shootings, violence, sexual violence, intolerance… but I don’t see that as addressing social concerns in the sense that I’m not writing to provide the reader with a lesson. I’m writing to tell a story.
This is Where It Ends is brutal, emotionally charged novel will grip readers and leave them brokenhearted.
~ Kirkus Review
Kirtida Gautam is a clinical psychologist and an author.
Follow her on Twitter @KirtidaGautam