Before studying at the Vilnius Academy of Arts, I worked as a painter at an electrical appliance factory. I used acetone paint to write slogans on canvases meant to ‘inspire’ others to work.

Undine Radzeviciute by Monika Pozerskyte

Undine Radzeviciute by Monika Pozerskyte

A motto that inspires me is Zhizn’ polzyot kak zmeya v travie, poka my vodim khorovod u fontana.

Life slips by like a snake in the grass while we dance in circles around the fountain. It is taken from an old song of a Russian rock band: Akvarium.

My best habit is drinking Chinese tea. Long Jing in the morning, Keemun at lunch, green Pu’er at five o’clock, and Dian Hong in the evening. The worst habit is a bar of Swiss chocolate a day.

One of my distant ancestors ordered the poisoning of the Archbishop of Riga in the late fifteenth century. Our entire family has been separated from the Church ever since and no one believes anymore.

Stories that have made a real impact on me are 100 Zen Stories.

My favourite places to visit are French and English parks and Japanese gardens. I also like Italian and Northern Renaissance painting, seventeenth century Dutch painting and almost every contemporary art museum – from the outside.

My spot for reading and thinking is at home, on the windowsill. This really irritates all of my neighbours. They think that’s all I do – that I’m spying on them.

My literature teacher used to say that I am only capable of writing three astoundingly good introductory sentences.

My inspiration for my latest novel Fishes and Dragons was a small black-and-white picture of a Chinese girl in European armour, The Thirty-Six Stratagems, and six boxes of Chinese tea.

I can only write in silence. And only for small periods of time.

Undine Radzeviciute will be appearing at London Book Fair 10th-12th April as part of their Baltic Market Focus. Find out more about the other authors and books involved here: