Valeriya Salt
Dive Beyond Eternity by Valeriya Salt

Dive Beyond Eternity by Valeriya Salt

What led you into writing?

I’ve always been an avid reader. I started to write relatively early, in my early teens, but I’d never seen it as a serious career. In fact, I never really wanted to be a writer. I guess I’ve just gradually gotten into it. The more I wrote, the more I liked it.

How does a typical day look?

Before my son was born, I usually wrote when I was off my day job (I worked part-time) and during weekends. Nowadays, I try to squeeze my creative routine between baby’s sleeps (he’s only three-months old).
I prefer to write in the early afternoon rather than early morning or late night. I don’t set a goal for a certain number of pages or words, just write as much as I can in one sitting.

In what ways do your characters test your abilities?

There’s always talking on the back of my mind. Sometimes scenes (and new characters too) are popping in my head in no particular order. For example, I can clearly see a few scenes from the beginning and the end of the book, but I’m getting stuck with the middle part. And my characters may keep silent about it for a while.

What’s your setup?

I’m lucky to have my own working desk and a proper office chair. I used to write on my laptop, but I’ve got a PC now with a big monitor (helps my poor vision from further deterioration).

What lasting effects have your favourite authors had on your writing and style?

Philip K Dick has influenced my tendency to create moody, a bit weird settings where the line between dreams, visions, and reality is blurred and uneven. Thriller writers like Michael Crichton and Robert Harris have influenced my passion for action and taught me how to create tension and suspense in stories.

What do you do for inspiration?

Travelling (especially abroad to some sunny historical places) always helps. However, hiking in the Peak District National Park (which is on my doorstep) also works. Music and reading books in similar genres work well against my writer’s block, too. In addition, I’m an avid gardener, so flowers and plants give me inspiration.

Dive Beyond Eternity
“The small research vessel rolled pitched wildly on the storm swell of the North Sea, the horizon disappearing beneath the dull waters. An armada of heavily pregnant clouds advanced from the west, readying their attack, giving no ground to the eternal blue sky or permitting the sun to penetrate their thick grey armour. Zara never felt seasick. In fact, the long drive from Portsmouth to Boston, to reach the wreck, exhausted her more than a few hours in the pre-storm sea. She daydreamed that in a previous life, she could’ve been a mermaid, or a pirate, or maybe a submarine captain.”  More

What repeating themes do you find yourself pulling into your stories?

Love, loss, death, war, peace, feeling of belonging, family, loyalty, friendship – the same themes that concern most people, I guess.

How do you wind down?

Pretty much the same way as I’m getting inspired: gardening, hiking, travelling when I can afford it, music, reading, watching Discovery or History + channels.

What sort of challenges do you regularly overcome while designing your world/setting?

On one hand, my novel is set in the present day UK, so I need to give my readers just a few details to identify it. On the other hand, there’re lots of references for World War II in general and U-boats and underwater warfare in particular. So my main challenge was to research the subject and give my readers just enough technical details so they could re-create the settings in their heads, but not to bore them with too much history and technical terms.

What are you reading at the moment?

Titanic Voyage by Julie Bihn, a time-travel story of love and loss, set aboard the Titanic, of course.

What’s the most useful advice you could give to an aspiring author?

I’d say don’t rush to publish your stories. Invest some time in searching for good beta-readers. You don’t necessarily need an army. It can be 3-4 people, but thorough ones. The ones you enjoy working with and who give you constructive feedback. Spend lots of time on editing and proofreading or, even better, outsource it to a professional editor/proofreader, if you have financial means to do so.
If you’re going for traditional publishing, research your publishers. There’re lots of vanity presses who charge authors to publish their books. There’re lots of cowboy-publishers who’re going for quantity not quality of books. I worked with one of them once. It didn’t end up very well for me.

Tell us about the book you’re promoting.

A World War II German U-boat is discovered in the North Sea. The vessel carries a secret weapon, able to split time and space. Zara Rose, a naval historian, is sent to investigate. Her mission soon turns into a nightmare where the world is just another illusion and time is long dead. Zara needs to stop the weapon from falling into wrong hands and navigate her way out of the endless labyrinth of multiple realities.

In this article:

Julie Bihn
Michael Crichton
North Sea
Peak District
Philip K Dick
Robert Harris
Titanic Voyage
World War 2

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Valeriya Salt

Valeriya Salt

Valeriya Salt is a multi-genre author from Sheffield (UK). She studied history and earned her Master’s degree in Art Expertise at St. Petersburg University of Culture and Arts.

Read about Valeriya

Dive Beyond Eternity by Valeriya Salt
What if History were written by the defeated? Historian Zara Rose is hired to investigate the discovery of an undamaged German U-boat in the North Sea. There she discovers Die Fledermaus, a Nazi superweapon powered by an unstable black matter, capable of transporting its passengers through time. After accidentally triggering the device, Zara travels to the past where she meets the mysterious Der Meister, a physicist who created the weapon. When a colleague vanishes with the device, Zara and her fellow historian Stefan Krause help a shadowy agency apprehend the thief. In the wrong hand’s the device could rewrite history or kill countless millions. Can Zara find Die Fledermaus before Der Meister’s visions of a renewed Third Reich can be brought to its terrible fruition?

Read Chapter One - Zara

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