People often ask me at book readings or during blog tours, “Why do you write so much about Cuba?” “Is it a place that intrigues you?” “Do you have a business connection?” “Do you have a personal nexus, perhaps a wife or a girlfriend in Cuba or from Cuba?” “Have you ever visited Cuba?” “What is it about Cuba that stimulates you to write all these books with a Cuban background?” “What inspires you the most to write about Cuba?”
The answer is simple — and it’s personal, not business. I am Cuban.
Most people don’t know this, so this might be news to many of you.
Much like Cid Milan, the main character in my book However long the Night, I arrived in the United States — Tampa, Florida — when I was nineteen years old. Like Cid, I left a girlfriend behind named Sonia. Unlike the Sandra in my book, Sonia was blonde and blue-eyed and, hopefully, not pregnant since I never saw her again. Like the Sandra in my book, Sonia was the daughter of Spaniards, as I am. The love scene in However Long the Night between Sandra and Cid as teenagers in Santa Maria del Mar Beach in Cuba is, well, a poignant memory of my life.
I’ve been to most of the Cuban places I describe in my books with a Cuban theme. In fact, I’ve been to, literally, all of the places I describe in any of my books, be it Cuba, Mexico, Brazil, Spain, Italy, France, Australia, or Dubai. I’ve been to more than thirty countries and have lived in six – Qatar, Brazil, Venezuela, Mexico, Cuba and the United States.
Several of my books have thinly-autobiographical passages of my experiences in Havana, Tampa, Miami, Dubai, Qatar, Rome, Paris, and Mexico. The Dubai scenes in my most recent book, Twin Powers, depict real locations and describe fictionalized, but real-life, people – more often than not with their salient traits toned down to make their fictitious characters “fathomable” for you, the reader.
One thing I’ve learned in my travels around the world is that life is often stranger than fiction. I have also learned that time allows you to look at the past from a different perspective.
That’s why I write about Cuba. I was born there. I left my childhood sweetheart there. My grandparents on my mother’s side are buried there.
Writers should write about things they know about. I know about Cuba.
Here is the Amazon link to Twin Powers, so you can check it out: http://www.amazon.com/Twin-Powers-David-Pereda/dp/1630661112/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1425253277&sr=1-2&keywords=twin+powers.
David Pereda is the award-winning author of seven novels, dozens of articles and a handful of poems. His latest thriller, Twin Powers, published by Second Wind Publishing in February 2015, has received rave reviews. Visit www.davidpereda.com.