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The Girl Who Lost Her Compass, the lost girl

Exploring the realms of resilience:

Through The Girl Who Lost Her Compass

Embark on a risky and daring journey as we dive into the captivating pages of "The Girl Who Lost Her Compass". Join the adventure of the courageous protagonist as she navigates the realms of self-discovery. This enigmatic book by author and artist Shantie is a blend of heartfelt storytelling and vivid imagery that will transport readers to a world of where dreams and reality intertwine. 

The Girl Who Lost Her Compass delves into themes of resilience, courage, and finding one's true path. Through unforgettable characters and modern prose, Shantie weaves a tale that resonates with readers of all ages. Immerse yourself in the world of the book and let your imagination soar as you follow the protagonist's quest to find her inner compass. 

With glowing reviews praising its lyrical prose and captivating storytelling, The Girl Who Lost Her Compass has captured the hearts of readers worldwide.



Lined Notebook

Author's interview series

Marina Raydun interview with Marie Shantie 


Marie Shantie: Like my heroine, I was born and raised in the Soviet Union and immigrated to the United States in the late 1990s. I received my higher education in San Marcos, California and then obtained masters & license in mental health in New York. I am a practicing licensed psychotherapist, and I worked with people with mental illnesses as well as with drug and alcohol addicted patients for many years.

Therefore, one of my tasks, already as a writer, was to more deeply reveal the problem of addiction and, possibly, influence the stigma about people who could not cope with life's difficulties, did not find internal and external support, and therefore turned to drugs. 

Although the novella is not autobiographical, some of the events described could have actually happened. Which ones - let it remain mystery.

Marina Raydun: You are bilingual. Which language do you find easier for creative storytelling?

Marie Shantie: I would say Russian as I moved from Russia to USA when I was 17-18 y.o., so I attended middle & high school in Russia.

Marina Raydun: What is the first experience you had when you learned that language had power? 

Marie Shantie: As a child I read this old good story in Russian about the power of punctuation called “Казнить нельзя помиловать”. Made a huge impression on me.
Marina Raydun: Your novella deals with some hefty, emotional scenarios. Can you talk a little bit about your inspiration or motivation for writing this piece? 

Marie Shantie: My inspiration to write it was driven by a person whom I lost in my life & who meant a lot to me. Before he died, I promised him that I’d go get my degree & license in mental health & substance abuse & dependency because I wanted to be able to understand & help people who are addicted like he was. I made this promise, then I went & got my degree, but before I did, he died. I continued. I thought, if I can help one person in my life, I’d feel justified to have my career. Then I got my degree & my license, but he was already dead & I talked about him a lot in my practice, in outpatient substance abuse groups which I ran & told people who had addiction issues about him, but it didn’t feel enough. So, I felt a calling to write about it. After I wrote about it, I felt relief. Like I told his story-now I am ok. 

Now there were other emotional scenarios dealing with another character (main character). That was inspired by other close people in my life who had to deal with crazy 90’s criminal Russia.  

Marina Raydun: What sort of research went into it?

Marie Shantie: The research that went into this was my masters degree, my license, my certification (Credentialed Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Counselor) & many years (about 8 before I wrote the book) working with mentally ill and people affected by addiction. Also, the research that went into writing about parts that took place in Russia came from my own experience. 

Marina Raydun:Why did you choose to write this novella in Russian as opposed to English?

Marie Shantie: Russian is my native language & the majority of story line took place in Russia with combined real characters.

Marina Raydun: What’s the most difficult part about writing characters from the opposite sex?

Marie Shantie: I wrote the story about two characters. One is of my own sex, the other is of opposite. I think the hardest part about writing about the opposite sex is that it is written about the real character who died in real life and me having to face this character’s mother reading it. 

Marina Raydun: What was the hardest scene to write? 

Marie Shantie:The second main character’s story because it is still very emotional for me-he died in real life & the way he died in real life.

Marina Raydun: What is your favorite genre to read? 

Marie Shantie: Satire. 

Marina Raydun: What are you currently reading?

Marie Shantie: Rereading Gogol “Dead souls”.

Marina Raydun: If you could have drinks with any person, living or dead, who would it be? 

Marie Shantie: Gogol!!

Marina Raydun: Why? 

Marie Shantie:  I was always fascinated by his works and his character. He supposedly was buried alive. 

Marina Raydun:What other authors are you friends with, and how do they help you become a better writer?

Marie Shantie: I don’t have any authors’ friends (yet), but would love to. 

Adopted from

November 22, 2021

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Contact, contact me, Marie Shantie, Shantie, artist, author
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