Author Interview- Rida Aamina

1) Can you tell us a little about your book? 

'Depository of Unrequited Love' is a collection of poems written over three long years; it takes you on a journey through heartbreak, passing all the stages on the Kübler-Ross grief cycle, with a modern-day addition, to keep you company through the confusion and hurt. To remind you that there is no one way to heal, and you are allowed to take your time. Love is not painful, but when you open your heart to love, the pain invites itself inside. And no matter how well you think you've prepared yourself for the breaking, you're never fully ready.

2) Is there a specific event that inspired this story, or was this an out-of-the-blue idea?

If you ask an author for advice, they'll always say, "write about what you know," and there was nothing I was more fluent in than the language of unrequited love. I learned about the Kübler-Ross grief cycle in school and knew that I wanted to do something significant with it. So when I finally put together this book of poems about my journey of unrequited love, I knew in my heart that this would be the perfect theme for it. 

3) What got you writing in the first place?

I've been writing since I was 13/14, so I'm not sure of the actual events, but I remember not having a safe space to talk about my feelings, so instead, I created that space with the power of words. My whole heart lives in these pages. 

4) What was your impression of your first draft when you read it?

Powerful but lacking. When I read the first draft of my book, I knew that it was the book a younger me would have wanted to read. But as a perfectionist, I knew that some things could be rewritten a little differently to change how it impacts the readers. 

5) Which part of your story connects the most with you? Why?

I love the emotions shown in the chapter "Depression" because it's raw, honest, and makes you feel a lot when you read it. But I think my personal favorite is "Rebound" because no one talks about that phase of heartbreak. No one told me about how I would hurt other people when I was hurting, and it was enlightening to see many other people relate to it. 

6) What makes your book the one to read? 

'Depository of unrequited love is a book of confessional poetry; when you read the book, you walk the mile with me as I figure out the in's-and-outs of heartbreak. We love, cry, make a fool of ourselves, and we keep going. It's a journey that other people see themselves in, but at the end of the day, it's a personal story to me and made relatable through my writing - why would you need to read anything else? 

7) What was the best advice you got while writing? 

I never got any advice when writing my book. It's a book that I shared with people only when it was close to finishing - it was too personal to have other people impact the way I shared my narrative. But I had all the support in the world during the process.

8) Who's your all-time favorite author? Which book of theirs made you fall in love with them? 

I have different favorites; one for poetry and one for novels. If you've read my book, you'll know that I am a massive fan of Warsan Shire's poetry. And Jeffrey Archer has had my heart from the second I picked up 'The Clifton Chronicles.

9) What is your evergreen tip to the writers out there?

As any good writer will tell you: write about what you know, read a lot, practice writing whatever you're comfortable with till you find your unique writing style. 

10) Do you have another plot brewing?

I do. My debut was a book I wrote for a younger me, but this one will be more global and tackle heavier issues. I have a lot of hope for book two.


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