1. Tell me about your book, Eyes of Amber, and where you got your inspiration for it?
My book, Eyes of Amber was inspired by my own experiences in medicine. I have encountered many patients and heard many stories, some sad, some funny, so this was in a way an outlet to share some of them. I also was interested in WWII, my grandparents lived through it, the stories of struggle and survival despite the horrible atrocities always affected me.
2. Did you learn anything from writing this book? If so what was it?
It is a tough job. Your mind is always working on what a character would say or do or how you need to describe a certain scene. And then you have to put all that you have imagined into words that make sense and will move the story forward. And all of it takes time, sometimes months and in some cases years.
3. What is the most influential book you’ve read in the last year?
Subliminal. How your unconscious mind rules your behaviour by Leonard Mlodinow. Interesting read, reminds us how the mind is a fascinating organ and that we don’t always control the way we form opinions and we cannot rely on our memory.
4. Have you ever been pulled over by a cop?
I have, for speeding, twice a few years apart. I was issued a ticket during the first encounter and after the second I was issued a warning.
5. What is the longest you’ve gone without writing?
A year and a half. I got busy with raising two little kids and then having a third. Life was busy.
6. Mountains or the beach?
Beach. You can lay there and relax, you can take a walk or you can go for a swim.
7. You’ve just been kidnapped and the people from the last TV Show/Movie you watched have to save you. Who is it?
Tom Hardy from Mad Max. Hot, strong and righteous. I know he will save me
8. What was your most defining moment in life?
Having my children. Nothing can prepare you and you cannot imagine it until it happens to you.
9. If you could bring one musician back from the dead, who would it be and why?
Freddie Mercury-amazing talent gone too soon.
10. What genre do you write in and what draws you into this genre?
My debut novel is a romance and I just started working on a new manuscript that is a romance as well. I would love to write an urban fantasy, but I think romance will be very prevalent in it. I consider myself a romantic. I believe in happy endings and happily ever after.
11. Are your characters based off real people or did they all come entirely from your imagination?
Most of my characters are a compilation of real life experiences and real people.
12. Do you have a day job in addition to being a writer? If so, what do you do during the day?
I am a dermatology Physician Assistant. I do biopsies, remove skin cancers, inject Botox and fillers and treat various skin conditions.
When fate gives you what you were not looking for, will you accept its gift?
Dr. Mila Roth is about to begin her training as an ER physician. She will encounter funny, sad, and memorable cases, witnessing the meaning of love through the eyes of the sick and their loved ones.
She doesn't believe in romance and soulmates yet, but that may soon change when she meets Leo, a handsome stranger with captivating warm eyes. She cannot explain her attraction to him, no other man was able to activate her love gene before. Will she decide to follow her heart this time or will Leo's occupation and secret push her away? As new feelings overwhelm her, she finds solace in the letters of her departed grandmother.
The correspondence from the past has a message for Mila's present. Will she connect the dots?
Anya Stassiy was born in Kazakhstan. She is the oldest of two siblings. Anya graduated from New York Institute of Technology with B.S. in Physician Assistant studies in 2007. She practices medical and esthetic dermatology in Brooklyn, NY. Eyes of Amber is her debut novel, but she has several articles published in medical journals. Anya lives in NJ with her husband and three children.