To celebrate 13 weeks of winter, I’ve partnered with artists and authors for a few surprises throughout the winter. Join us on the hashtag #13Winterviews.
M. A. Guglielmo
Interviewed 8 December 2017
1. First off, tell us a little bit about who you are and what type of books you write.
Hi, I’m Maria Guglielmo, and I’m a neurosurgeon and a fantasy writer. I live in New England with my two awesome daughters. This year we’ve added in a standard poodle puppy and an appropriately spooky black cat, so my house in generally in a state of controlled chaos most days.
2. What projects are you working on these days?
My brand new project is SINS OF THE SEVEN, a historical fantasy based on 1800’s England and Iran. Both the Regency period in England and the Qajar Dynasty’s reign in Iran have some fascinating parallels, with rapid changes in politics, art and fashion taking place. My main character straddles both worlds, as a young woman born to parents from fantasy versions of both cultures.
3. Do you have any strong social or political statements your work aims to represent?
I’ve been following and learning about issues involving the Middle East and the Islamic world since 2001. Bringing in positive cultural details from those areas into my work has only grown more political over the past few years, even though the main focus of my novels is to entertain. I also strongly support greater diversity and the promotion of disadvantaged voices in writing, and especially in speculative fiction.
4. Who is your favourite dragon?
So glad you asked! That would be Azi Dahaka, also known as Zahhak, an evil being from Persian mythology. Persian dragons are often depicted as serpentine, and unlike East Asian dragons, are generally malevolent. My favorite version of Zahhak is as an evil prince who grew two hideous serpents on each shoulder. Each one needed to be fed human brains every day, which made Zahhak a highly unpopular ruler.
5. What is your favourite spaceship?
The USS Enterprise. I’m old school about my starships.
6. Favourite wind-down-after-a-hard-day beverage?
Mostly green tea, but an Italian Chianti is nice when I can indulge.
Want to know more about Maria? You can check out her blog: M. A. Guglielmo, hang out with her on Twitter, stalk her on Facebook where she posts awesome stuff about Iran and Morocco, or check out her novel aesthetics on Pinterest.
Don’t forget to check back on more Winterviews and partner interviews.