Style, Charm, Creativity

A woman can teach how to get true pleasure from this life only if she has experienced all aspects of happiness as a female and a human being
Belarusian theater enthusiasts will soon have a marvelous chance to see once again that the sad story of Romeo and Juliette is eternal. The Theater of Belarusian Drama, based in Minsk, will present the premiere of the musical “Roman and Julia: Eternal Story”, directed by Valery Anisenko.
Besides, representatives of the sterner sex, that appear to be one of the two necessary components of such a feeling as love, will be able to hold, open and read a book written especially for them. The book is named “Women’s Gimmicks” and has just appeared in Minsk bookstores.

The author of the dramatic interpretation of the saddest ever story on earth and one of the funniest ever practical psychology books is Diana Balyko, the member of the Belarusian Union of Writers and the International Association of Writers and Publicists, a self-made successful young lady that fits the image of the perfect heroine of our times. We welcome her in Беларусь. Belarus.

— A playwright, writer, psychologist, poetess, journalist, photographic designer and a stylish woman that attends lectures in the Institute of Literature. Doesn’t it seem too much for a married woman, a licensed historian and pedagogue?

— I would say “too little”. I am a very active person, I’m a natural born leader, a woman with too much testosterone, if you will. But life is too short, and I want to try as many things as possible. I want to take up business and art, design and photography, advertising and sports, printing and upbringing of children. There is a lot of me. As for the style, it is my mission.

— Do you have enough time for your home, for the husband?

— Of course. Denis always understands me. We got married seven years ago. Fortunately, he is not an enthusiast of soft chairs and he will not freak out if the house is not exceptionally clean. He is a programmer, a bright and self-sufficient personality, so when we have money and decide whether to buy new furniture and change wallpaper that the cat has damaged or go on vacation we would both opt for a foreign tour. The atmosphere is created by the inner peace and spiritual climate rather than curtains and carpets.

— But the relations you are talking about could happen in an environment with nice-looking curtains and comfort?

— Certainly, but it depends. I, for one, can tolerate some dust, and I don’t think every thing should have its own place in the house. I cannot sew, I cannot knit, I cannot do macramй, and I’m not a very good cook, either. My husband does not have dinner at home, and I try to minimize my time in the kitchen. Every woman can cook soup, but it takes a real lady to write verses. I do cook sometimes, but it should be something not trivial but and inspiring, like risotto, pasta with seafood, pizza, julienne, fondue or mulled wine. And I always try to be creative and give the dish all the love I have. I also like cooking with my husband, so I often allow him to peel vegetables and do the dishes.

— Do you travel a lot?

— I don’t just travel a lot, I live in travels, in trains, planes, buses and cars. I’ve been to New York, Prague, Amsterdam, Paris, Rome, Krakow. I’ve lived from suitcases for the past three years, and although I live in Minsk I stay here only two months out of twelve. This summer we were in Turkey, and in a month I’m going to Nepal with my husband.

— You have some project in mind?

— You guessed right. I invest in a new novel that I have been writing in my head for some time now. I got the final in my novel ready, but I miss the sensations of a person that has traveled to Nepal.

— Real impressions are very precious. Do you use them when writing your psychology books?

— I had worked as a journalist for many years, and I provided professional counseling. I had several columns in papers and magazines. Readers were sending sincere mail, they were making phone calls and asked hundreds of questions. I was answering and meeting them to provide advice personally. Years passed, but women were still interested in ways to success, self-actualization, advice how to fall in love and be loved, get married and give birth to nice and healthy children, fight with fears and temptation, face challenges of the modern world and get as much pleasure from life as possible. I accumulated so much information that I could not fit it into my narrow columns and I felt I must start writing books, so I wrote the first one, and then the second followed, and then there was another one.

— But you were not afraid of competing with Carnegie and other psychology gurus?

— No, I was not, because I’m writing for men and women with local, Slavic mentality. The main advantage of my books is plain language and audacity, so both men and women read them with pleasure. I was in the U.S. once and saw a television program about a 40-year-old charwoman named Laura that was dumped by her boyfriend, a bus driver. The woman was crying, she was embarrassed and did not know what to do or where to go. She had been dreaming of having a family and nurturing her kids. A psychologist recommended Laura to go to college, graduate and work as a nurse in a kindergarten. In America this Laura will of course manage to make her dream come true. But I can’t imagine a local charwoman that washes my house taking out a loan to get educated. I don’t mean I speak highly of the U.S. and this Laura, but in Belarus there are many factors that would not allow local women to make this move.

— You are published in EKSMO, the largest Russian publishing house. How did this happen?

— EKSMO’s main brands are Ustinova, Dontsova, Marinina and Pelevin. I could not succeed at home, I thought it was too slow, so I went to Moscow. The publisher seemed to like my psychological “opuses”, and he immediately offered me to have a series of books published in EKSMO. This is a huge credit, because many good authors cannot have their series published in years.

— Do you like being successful, stylish and fashionable?

— I love it, just like I love being a woman. Success is a part of fashion, and fashion is the prime mover for progress.

— Besides all these components that make your life so fascinating, like a nice review about a new book of Diana de Charmant or a new theatrical premiere, a wise and loving husband and new talents that you found out that you have, are there any other reasons to have a feast?

— A holiday, a feast without any reason is my favorite. To have a holiday you should just stop moving amid the crazy race that is called “life”.

Valentina Zhdanovich
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