From the Author
As a reader, I always enjoy finding out about "the story behind the story" of a work of literature. So, I decided to share some background about my novel Love of a Stonemason. The initial trigger was an intense personal experience. At the end of 2005, I lost my mother and found myself to be the sole survivor of our immediate family in Switzerland, my only sister and my father having died earlier. Death and its impact--the pain of loss and loneliness--play an important in the life of the main character in the novel. During that time, I spent several months in Switzerland, cleaning out our family home, getting it ready to be renovated. I came across my father's early paintings--he was an artist as a young man. I talked to a stonemason and sculptor about the tombstone on my parent's grave. That gave me the idea for my main characters and their professions. I spent time with my relatives in the Ticino, the Italian canton of Switzerland, so the Vallemaggia became the central location. My trips to Peru and Italy also found their way into the novel. The final product was a completely fictional story. While writing Love of a Stonemason, I was rarely conscious of any one particular person, incidence or experience which influenced me. Some of it came to me much later. I had many "aha"-moments half-way into the novel or even after it was finished. One of the most fascinating aspects of the creative process is the way consciousness and the unconscious work together to produce something unique and new.
About the Author
Born and raised in Switzerland, Christa Polkinhorn has always had the desire to explore the world outside of her beautiful but tiny country. As a young woman, she traveled through Europe, came to the United States on an exchange program, and ended up staying. Her travels led her to China and Japan as well as South America. She studied literature and linguistics in Zurich and California. Now, she lives and works as writer and translator in southern California and divides her time between the United States and her native Switzerland. The tension and excitement this “double life” creates informs her literary work. Most of her novels take place in several countries. Aside from writing and traveling, Christa is an avid reader and a lover of the arts and dark chocolate.