Finding the one is only the beginning…
Zara is fifteen the first time she meets Leon. During a power cut in a small French museum, the two spend one short hour in the dark talking about their love for art, Monet and Paris. Neither knows what the other looks like. Both know their lives will never be the same.
In Paris, Leon no longer believes he will ever find the girl he lost that night. After dreaming about him for years, Zara thinks she has already found him. When they meet at an exhibition, they don’t recognise each other – yet the way they feel is so familiar…
Over the course of twenty years, Zara and Leon are destined to fall in love again and again. But will they ever find a way to be together?
‘It’s about dreams and taking chances. Missed opportunities and mistakes. Loss and sacrifice. But above all, it is about love. The kind of love that survives time, distance… even death. The kind of love I wish for you.’
– When and where do you prefer to write?
Outside. Always outside. No matter how fancy or comfy an office or desk might be— my husband tried many times to get me to use them—, I will still sit in my back yard, on fairly uncomfortable outdoor chairs. If I had the time, I’d write all day, but usually I only manage to get in one- or two-hour sessions in between everyday life happenings like day job, may daughter’s school (especially these days with online learning)
– Do you have a certain ritual?
In a way, yes. At the beginning of a draft I curate a ‘soundtrack’ made up of 20-25 songs that I will listen to for as long as it takes me to finish that draft and all the way to final edits. And that soundtrack is forever then linked with that particular book. In my mind, at least.
– Is there a drink or some food that keeps you company while you write?
Coffee. Definitely. Lots and lots of coffee.
– What is your favourite book?
This is a tough one. I have way more than just one favourite book. A few that come to mind: Salman Rushdie’s Midnight Children, Ian McEwan’s Atonement, Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude, Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre and Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca.
– Do you consider writing a different genre in the future?
I have written in different genres already, although most of those manuscripts are sleeping peacefully in one of my desk’s drawers. If a story comes to me and is there to stay (for weeks or even months) then I will write it, whether it’s a love story or not.
– Do you sometimes base your characters on people you know?
I wouldn’t necessarily say my characters are based on real people, but I do get inspiration from my life, for sure.
– Do you take a notebook everywhere in order to write down ideas that pop up?
No. I get all sorts of ideas, all the time, but the ones I end up writing are stories that keep coming back to me. That’s how I know there’s something special about them.
– Which genre do you not like at all?
I don’t think there’s a genre I truly don’t like. There is one though that I rarely read and that is horror.
– If you had the chance to co-write a book. Whom would it be with?
Great question. Marc Levy. I’ve long admired him, his career and books ever since I read his debut back in 1999.
– If you should travel to a foreign country to do research, which one would you chose and why?
I have an idea for a story set in Australia, but I only write about places I’ve either visited or lived in so I would definitely have to go there for ‘research’. Plus, it’s been on my list for a long time.
Thank you, Olivia Lara and Rachel’s Random Resources
About the author
OLIVIA LARA was born and raised in Bucharest in a family of booklovers and storytellers. Since university she has worked as a journalist and marketer in Romania, France and the United States. She is currently a marketing executive in San Francisco and lives in the Bay Area with her husband, young daughter and four cats. Someday in Paris is her first novel.
Author website: olivia-lara.com