Bringing this novel to life was a dream realized
More about the book
Writing this book is the realization of a dream I had since high school.
Victor’s story is remarkable, set apart from many narratives about the Dutch East Indies. It’s distinctive because he was born Austrian in a Dutch society that ultimately turned against him.
However, before I could put this story on paper, I felt the need to live my own life fully. It wasn’t until shortly after my 50th birthday that my dad posed a poignant question, “So, when are you truly going to start writing?” Dad was 85 at the time. It dawned on me that many individuals of his generation had already departed, and their stories had been lost forever. In response, I made a solemn promise to my father, and together we embarked on a series of Skype conversations. Every Monday, for over half a year, I interviewed him, gathering the essence of his experiences. Then, I began the process of writing.
This is my first novel. Writing, I’ve discovered, is as much about perseverance as it is about talent. I recall the wisdom that suggests bad writers quit, while good writers persist. I chose to persist. Fortunately, I have a supportive and understanding husband who brought me coffee, tea, lunch, and a well-deserved glass of wine at the end of each day!
A big thank you to the kind and generous souls who stood by my side throughout this journey. I am also deeply appreciative of HarperCollins Holland for taking on the Dutch publication of this novel.
My dad Victor was a unique person with an extraordinary story, born in 1931. This novel is based on the first thirty intriguing years of his life.
Victor was a go-getter. He had an entrepreneurial mind, was a non-conformist, and not a big talker, although that changed over the years. Victor was a reliable friend, and a real family man. At crucial moments in my life, he stood behind me, and supported me unconditionally, without wasting too many words, even when I had made mistakes.
Victor passed away in November 2021 from the effects of Covid-19. He was in his 91st year.