Q &A Scene: Helena Pekar – My Lola-Love of my Life

Tell me about the writing process and how you came to write this book.

I used to write books all my life. They were longer and had a higher potential for success than Lola. Some of my books were poetry, some were novels and some were diaries or collections of short stories. When I was 17 years old – I was ready to publish my first book, but a very close person told me that I will never be a good writer and that I am just wasting my time. (Needless to say, this person never read any of my material at all). I won’t say I got discouraged from writing – I certainly kept on writing the way I did through all the years prior to that – But the effect it did have on me was that every time my material was ready to be published – I used to get a kerosene jerrycan , a box of matchsticks, a metal tray and a bottle of whisky – Drink the whiskey and set my book on fire. With this last book to date “My Lola” – I decided to break this this sickly pattern and  get my work out to the world.

The writing of Lola started close to the time I was going through a divorce in early 2017. In a way – the writing served as an escape from reality – an escape which I made as distant as I could, writing in a second language and from a male’s perspective… It continued all throughout the period of 2 years – with long breaks in between sessions. In that time, I have moved houses 11 times, changed workplaces, developed my education, adopted a cat, lost a very close and dear person to suicide and been through a romantic roller-coaster with a man I saw myself growing old with – But life has it’s own plans sometimes, and we can’t always tell what they may be until they actually take place.

I guess the reason I am able to publish this book is because the CEO of the business I work for has come up with an idea of asking us to put our personal plans for the next few years down in writing and share them with the team – One of my plans was to publish Lola, but I was very far of making it happen – This work activity and the simple fact of putting it down on paper held me accountable and committed to the finish-line and I did it. Thank you from the bottom of my heart, Courtney, if you read this.

What is the book about?

The book is based on a love letter of a detective (investigator) by the name Joe Marshall to Lola King (a woman he fell in love with) before they were separated under mysterious circumstances.

The reader learns more and more about Joe and the depth of this character with each chapter and follows Joe through his journey and search for Lola which became his obsession and the sole purpose of his life.

The book is a crime fiction, a romance, an adult book, a psychological or philosophical – and perhaps an insight into mental health as well. I was told by a reader that It is mystical and it makes you curious to find out what’s coming next.

How would you describe your book in food form and why?

“Real” – or “raw” come to mind. You see – Joe and I are very different in nature. We don’t behave in the same way and don’t think the same… Joe is my creation… everything about Joe is imaginary – but at the same time his feelings are real and raw – and we all can connect to his feelings in one way or another. There is no sugar-coating with Joe… He is just him start to finish – no lies, no masks… no games… He is entirely open and not trying to make a good impression.

Who or what inspires you?

As you will see, the book is full of unique characters – They were all inspired to some degree by living and breathing people, yet none of them are specific or based on any one single person – they are all collected bit by bit along the way… A bit from here a bit from there – and stitched together neatly until the picture came to live.  Everything inspires me… You inspire me… Life inspires me… If you live a day of your life and don’t get inspired – you are wasting your time. 

What’s your favourite book at this point in time?

“Shift Happens” by Robert Holden. I am not sure why this is, but trust me – my copy of this book is filled with highlighter marks.

Which book do you wish you wrote?

“Kafka on the Shore” by Haruki Murakami. I just wish my mind worked this way – Wish it was so complex, so twisted, so deep, so exciting and with so many facets to it… Perhaps right next to “Sophie’s World” by Jostein Gaarder. * The last one is a book I read years ago that just happened to leave a strong impression. 

What’s next for you?

I have started working on a new Novel, but life got in the way as it does. 

I will get back to writing in between working, looking after my cat Henry and studying as I usually do. So stay tuned… It won’t be long before you will asking me about my next book.

What is your scene?

My scene? My scene is wherever you can see me sitting next to my tent with a cup of tea and a fishing rod in my hands on the banks Murray river, staring into the distance mesmerised by the tiny fragile waterbirds and thanking life for allowing me to enjoy the sounds of crickets, frogs and carps jumping out of the water. If not there, than you will find me in a cabin up high in a mountains with a throw-rug wrapped around me and a cup of tea in my hands enjoying the cool breeze through my hair and on my face, the steam coming out of my cup and the remote sounds of the forest… If I am really lucky, then we will probably meet in the wide red desert where you will find me gazing at the stars and imagining the world the way it was millions of years ago… 

Helena Pekar has been writing since she was 17 years old and this is her first published novel. Her book “My Lola- Love of My Life,” is a series of love letters written by a detective named Joe Marshall to Lola. The entire book is based on Marshall’s memories, feelings and the aftermath of their separation and his search to find her. My Lola, explores the mystical, psychological, philosophical and sexual sides of love with crime and humour thrown in for good measure. It also deals with mental health issues which are relevant in today’s society.

My Lola is out now on Amazon :

About Anna-Maria Megalogenis 157 Articles
Anna-Maria has been writing for Street Press in Melbourne and Sydney for over 20 years. She is passionate about food, music and the arts, is an avid reader and used to hand write reviews for Beat Magazine at the Great Britain Hotel, where a patron once suggested she was ripping off articles in Rolling Stone magazine.