Esther thinks she'll never have to face the truth. Until the only woman she's ever loved shows up on her doorstep in the middle of rainstorm.
Published: July 2017
Esther's parents never approved of her, and her fear of people discovering she's a lesbian has led to a solitary life. Living alone in an RV park in South Florida, sequestered from the world, Esther thinks she'll never have to face the truth. Until the only woman she's ever loved shows up on her doorstep in the middle of rainstorm.
To make matters worse, Esther's cat, Petunia, mysteriously goes missing. While crossing the railroad tracks to search for her feline companion, Esther steps through a tear in the dimensional fabric. Her carefully constructed world is left behind, and what she discovers is far more than she bargained for...
1. Different genres and different kind of stories – how did you get the write Listen for the Train?
My cat, Petunia, ran away and never returned. I decided to create a backstory about where she had gone, and then Esther and Lily came along. I wanted to try something different—just let myself go and explore magical realism. I decided not to impose any rules on myself and to write with unflinching honesty. Listen for the Train is the result.
2. I read your very touching poem “When I Miss You, I Look in the Mirror” and I saw that the in-between world could be found in your stories too. What is your opinion (and hopes) on this subject?
Thank you for reading my poem! My great-grandmother could see the future in a crystal ball, and my grandmother could do the same, at times. So, I inherited their gifts, and ever since I was a child I have been able to see things that other people can’t see. My belief is that we are reunited with our loved ones after death. I feel comforted by that, especially since I’ve experienced a lot of loss in the last few years. Listen for the Train is dedicated to my little brother, Miles, who committed suicide two years ago (which still feels like yesterday). I feel my loved ones around me, watching from the in-between. We’re not alone.
3. I checked your books and it seems to me that your titles, usually, have double meanings – a real and a more symbolic one. Tell us why and how did you choose the title of this story.
It is true that my titles tend to have double meanings. A lot of times, titles and stories come to me in dreams. Listen for the Train made sense because of the journey that Esther takes through the woods and into the parallel reality where she finds her cat, Petunia. The train leads her back home again, in the end of the story. She follows the sound to bring her back to her cottage. Another novel I wrote, Meet Me in the Garden, got its title from visions that I had, and yet another book, Over the Ivy Wall, was also named from a dream.
4. Goodreads says “Adult”, Amazon – “Fiction – Romance-Lesbian – Fantasy”, Less Than Three Words as “Fantasy - Urban Fantasy – Lesbian” – what are the main features of your book and in what category could be put?
I tend to write cross-genre stories, and Listen for the Train is a good example. The main characters Esther and Lily are in a relationship, so that accounts for the “lesbian” tag. Less Than Three Press is an LGBTQ publisher. I prefer the category magical realism, because that’s more what I was going for when I wrote the novel. It’s more metaphysical than fantasy, but readers may see it differently.
5. You live by the sea and already you wrote the Siren for the Dead. Is it truth that the sea fuels the artistic creativity? (why so?)
Florida is my soul home, so I feel it definitely fuels my creativity to be here—simply because I belong here. A Siren for the Dead, though, was written when I was younger, and is no longer in print. The sea factors into it, so I was probably looking forward to when I would one day be back by the ocean.
About the author:
Rosa Sophia is an automotive mechanic, but everyone thinks she is a librarian. She lives in South Florida in a cottage by the sea, and hopes to earn an MFA in Creative Writing one day. Other books include "The House Guest" and the "When I Dream of You" novella trilogy. As a trigeminal neuralgia patient, she also writes about her condition in the hope that it will spread awareness of this rare disorder. Her novels "Meet Me in the Garden" and "Orion Cross My Sky" both feature main characters that suffer with trigeminal neuralgia. Rosa hopes readers will gain a greater understanding of this disability through her stories.
also by Rosa Sophia