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What would we find under your bed?
Mostly dust bunnies unfortunately.
What was the scariest moment of your life?
When I was stabbed with a needle at a Russian subway station. Apparently, pricking your arm is a common method robbers use to get you to drop the bag you’re holding, but it didn’t work because my winter coat was too thick so it didn’t go all the way into the muscle tissue. Still, I was terrified for several weeks that I had been infected with something. Thankfully, I was fortunate enough to walk away with nothing but a tiny red dot on my forearm.
Do you listen to music while writing? If so what?
I usually write in silence, but once in a while, I get the urge to put on some rock classics from the 70-80ies.
What is something you'd like to accomplish in your writing career next year?
Publish the next two books in the Juche series.
How long did it take you to write this book?
I originally wrote books 1-4 as one book and then split it into four to make the editing more manageable. So I can’t say for sure about the last book, but I have spent nights and weekends for the past 4-5 years on writing the Juche story.
There she has to fight for survival together with the family she hates and is forced to re-evaluate every aspect of her life until then: her deep resentment toward her twin sister; her view of her father in the face of mounting evidence that he is a traitor with the blood of millions of fellow countrymen on his hands; and even her love and affection for the Great General - the eternal savior and protector of Choson, whom she had always considered her true father.
Note from the author:
Have you ever wondered what the world looks like when seen through an indoctrinated mind?
This is a topic that has intrigued me for as long as I can remember, so when I came up with the idea to write a book many years ago, I decided to create it from the viewpoint of a victim of indoctrination… which in the end became Areum (the protagonist of the story).
What I try to explore in this story is how deep the indoctrination of a 14-year old girl can run and how much “reality” it can be exposed to before breaking… if it will break at all. As a comparison, the defectors from North Korea who arrive in South Korea are isolated for three months in a de-programming facility called Hanawon before they are allowed to join society where they go through this process in a more controlled (and less brutal) way than Areum.
I hope you will enjoy this slightly different take on the dystopian genre!
Read an Excerpt
A loud screech in the sky interrupts me. I look up. A large black crow is circling high above us. Then another crow joins in. The screeching intensifies. Another one joins in, and then another. Before I know it, the whole sky has turned black with a swirling mass of crows, flying in a tornado-like circle right above us. I feel their beady eyes looking down at me.
The mass of crows now forms a funnel, spiraling downward toward us. I scream and put my hands up in defense. But the crows don’t target me. The black moving mass instead completely consumes the living corpse of my dad.
“NOOO!” I scream as I helplessly witness the crows dismembering him piece by piece right before my eyes. They pull his eyeballs out from their sockets. They tear the skin from his arms and legs. I cry and scream. I want to run to him, to help him… but I still can’t move.
Then it’s all over, and the crows disperse and ascend back into the sky, bringing their ear-piercing screech and the pieces of my father’s body with them. What was left of him is now again lying lifelessly on the ground. His face is still turned to me, but he had no more dead eyes to look at me with.
Another screech makes me look up to the sky again. The crows are circling ominously. Faster and faster. The screeching intensifies, cutting painfully into my ears, as they once more swirl down towards me like a tornado. I put my hands up in defense and scream as the first crow brushes against my hair. Another one grabs my arm with its claws. I try to break free, but my feet are still glued to the ground.
I now have crows all over my body, and as the one on my arm penetrates my skin with its beak, I…
About the Author:
Amazon Buy links:
Juche 1 – The Demon of Yodok: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08FQLHKYP/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i0
Juche 2 – The Weeping Masses: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08J42Y4Y5
Juche 3 – The Storm of Storms: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B099BKWKKR
Juche 4 – Freedom or Death: https://www.amazon.com/Freedom-Death-Young-Dystopian-Survival-ebook/dp/B09D9NBZ7S/ref=sr_1_1
Juche 1-4 Box Set: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0B3F21BKV/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i4
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