Monika Simkovicova

Writes in Monika Šimkovičová

Monika Simkovicova

It may seem that I started to write just recently, but the truth is quite the opposite. I’ve been writing since my childhood. First it had been some poems but soon I realised that it’s not the right thing for me. My first poem, the one about the very first Czechoslovak cosmonaut, was literally understood by no one…

When I was 8 and I wrote Hands off from Vietnam, my teachers were bringing me to all the military bases around and I had to recite it…

So I gave up on poetry and started to write short stories instead. Some of them even made it into a real book. But that was just the beginning.

In 2015 I finished a novel called Roden24, which was published as an e-book in Slovak, Czech and English. And at the same time it was also published as an audiobook narrated by the leading Slovak actors.

And that was the time when Roden started to grow up. It even overtook his older sister Aluni, which has been waiting last 5 years to be finished. The novel VIGIL was born.

Sometimes, I get tired of how carefully you have to work with the term sci-fi in our country. You move your writing a bit beyond the limits of the possible and suddenly, you’re put in the literature ghetto. This is exactly how Ondrej Herec, the grand master of Slovak modern fantasy and sci-fi theoretician, phrased it. “Fantasy is a genre which, in our country, belongs to a literature ghetto. It operates parallel to the acknowledged ‘high’ literature. Fortunately though, it’s been slowly building its self-esteem.” After tens of mystery stories and two “light-fantasy” novels, I wrote a collection of short stories called VIGIL. More than anything, I find it romantic.
I will never again say that desperate sentence, not even to me: “What else can happen to me today?” Not once, this sentence costed me a lot. Probably, it is the most provocative question targeting “somewhere above”. And there is always a clear answer coming back. I will seriously remember it! After a day hectic to the max, when the turbulence and the hurricane of bad news calmed down, I went to do some shopping. I had planned to spend the weekend at home and spend it creatively. I was not sure yet whether it would be painting or writing, but I knew for sure I would be creating. I had not been a creator for so long that I became a creature in fact.
Not having any connection to the Vigils and without me influencing it in any way, my day has been all about the colour purple. First thing in the morning, a lady in the biggest, most purple hat I’d ever seen walked into my gallery. She was looking for some light bulbs. I asked her if she thought my shop looked like a place that sells light bulbs and smiled at her. She seemed taken aback, then she looked around and ended up buying a scarf. A purple one.
Whenever you switch on your TV, there’s always something on that can get you hooked. I’m a movie maniac and I admit I’ve fallen prey to the modern trend of TV shows. I can see why creators bet on the format of TV shows. When I come back home and it’s around midnight, I can rarely make it through a two-hour-long feature. TV show episodes only last about an hour and in case the show is good, you get sucked in very fast. My favorites like Game of Thrones, Westworld, Twin Peaks, and others, those are all fine. But that’s not the right movie night. An all-out movie night means a bowl of popcorn, a comfy blanket, a switched-off phone. God, it’s been so long since I’ve given myself permission to enjoy this luxury!
y friend Matúš, a professional actor, writes amazing short stories. He’s only been writing them for himself mostly. It’s exactly the writing style and genre I love. Sometimes, we will exchange a couple stories and then have long talks about them. We basically write about the same thing and yet, the stories are completely different. In one way or another, we inspire each other in heaps. Matúš is one of the few people I’m willing to let into my literary kitchen and let him peak under the lids of my overflowing pots.
Some days you feel like you could change the world. Make it fall off its axis with your own actions. Anything you touch turns to gold. You have the strength and the equipment to do it. I have no idea what the best thing to do on such days would be, but I’ve decided to sit down at a computer and type away. My muses keep kicking me so hard I sometimes wonder how I don’t have any bruises. I will always remember this day. This is the day my new Universum was created. The Vigils, you see, have slowly and inconspicuously taken up residence in the next novel I’m writing called CALIGO. They have squeezed their way into all parts of the story and have become its integral part.