The Booktopia Book Guru asks
author of The Diet Starts on Monday
Ten Terrifying Questions
1. To begin with why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself – where were you born? Raised? Schooled?
I was born in Dulwich Hill and moved to Villawood when I was two years old. I’ve lived in the Fairfield area ever since. I attended Mary MacKillop Catholic College.
2. What did you want to be when you were twelve, eighteen and thirty? And why?
At twelve I wanted to have my own merit stamp factory, at eighteen I wanted to have a café by the beach & at thirty I wanted to be an author.
Age twelve: Because as a kid I loved those ink stamps that my teachers would use to mark my work & I’d collect them as a hobby.
Age eighteen: I love coffee, socialising & the water.
Age thirty: A publisher loved my short story The Diet Starts on Monday. This set me on the path of writing my first novel.
3. What strongly held belief did you have at eighteen that you do not have now?
At eighteen I thought there was only right and wrong.
4. What were three works of art – book or painting or piece of music, etc – you can now say, had a great effect on you and influenced your own development as a writer?
Most definitely Mariah Carey’s album Music Box. She is the best selling female artist of all time & writes all her lyrics. My love of writing started through rhythmical poetry & I think a part of that was influenced by her songs.
5. Considering the innumerable artistic avenues open to you, why did you choose to write a novel?
Novels are, and have always been, my favourite thing to read – and crime novels/mystery novels in particular.
6. Please tell us about your latest novel…
My debut novel is titled The Diet Starts on Monday. It’s about an obese teenage girl, who loses weight to win the boy of her dreams.
7. What do you hope people take away with them after reading your work?
That obese people are worthy of love too.
8. Whom do you most admire in the realm of writing and why?
The SWEATSHOP authors such as Stephen Pham, Luke Carman, Felicity Castagna, Lachlan Brown, Fiona Wright and Michael Mohammed Ahmad because their writing represents Western Sydney in a positive way as opposed to the negative representations that are always being told.
9. Many artists set themselves very ambitious goals. What are yours?
I want my novel to become a movie.
10. What advice do you give aspiring writers?
Never give up!
Tamar, thank you for playing.
by Tamar Chnorhokian
Zara Hagopian is size 22. She has a secret crush on the hottest boy in school, Pablo Fernandez, who has a skinny girlfriend named Holly. Zara hangs out with her best friends Carmelina and Max. They go window shopping in Parramatta and drink hot chocolate in Stockland Mall. Zara learns some of lifes hard lessons when she puts these friendships on the line and goes on a diet to win the boy of her dreams.
About the Author
Tamar Chnorhokian is a vital new voice from Western Sydney. Her first novel speaks to young Australians with double servings of humour and heart.