Sara Nović: Girl at War
Sara Nović is an impressive writer with a unique perspective on language and writing. She recently graduated from Columbia University with an MFA in Creative Writing and Translation Studies. Her debut novel, Girl at War tells the story of the Serbo Croatian war from the eyes of a young Croatian girl and her post-war life in the US. This story is a powerful page-turner.
Sara Nović also happens to be deaf, and has written about her experiences as a novelist in a very hearing-centric field. She blogs about her frustrations with the English language as it forces us to use inappropriate phrases at times (i.e. “The politician turned a deaf ear to the people’s protest.”). Additionally, she’s a translator and admits she’s extremely particular with the specific English words she chooses in her writing.
I was so excited to interview her and geek out on all things language-nerdy! We met over Skype and had an interview in American Sign Language. You can see the captioned videos from our interview and Jenn Chavez provided voiceover for the radio broadcast. Sara was featured as part of Intersections Radio for my November episode of “passport without a country.”
Check out the podcast and videos! Stay tuned for the transcript!
Air date: 11/6/2015
**Special thanks to:
Sherly Jacob for translation help
Jenn Chavez for the great voiceover
Check out captioned videos from our interview!
Sara talks about what inspired the story behind Girl at War:
Sara shares some traits with the protagonist, Ana:
On navigating language, both in Ana’s life and in her own life:
The frustrations with English, especially as a Deaf person:
Choosing to write about a war as a work of fiction:
The Croatian community’s reception of the book:
Sara’s odd relationship with the audiobook version: