Stambolova, AlbenaPrint This Post
Albena Stambolova graduated in French philology from the Sofia University. She has worked as an editor and translator and also writes in the field of literary and social criticism, foreign literature reception and psychoanalysis.
Between 1990-1999, she lived in Paris, where she earned an MA in psychology and defended a dissertation focused on semiotics and psychoanalysis at the University of Paris VII Jussieu. She also worked and taught at the University of Paris ІX Dauphine, as well as the University of Paris ІІІ Censier.
For the last few years, she has lived in Bulgaria, where she works as a psychological and organizational consultant. She has also maintained a practice as a psychotherapist.
Albena Stambolova is the author of three novels. This Is the Way It Happens (2002) is her debut novel, which has also been translated into Polish. It was followed by Hop-Hop the Stars (2003, forthcoming in Polish), and An Adventure, To Pass the Time (2007). She has also published a collection of short stories, Three Dots (1985), and a psychoanalytical study on Marguerite Duras, Sickness in Death (2004). The author of numerous articles and translations, she is now working on a book about fairy tales and a collection of short stories.
Synopsis of the novel This Is the Way It Happens by Albena Stambolova
Boris, a young boy painfully uncomfortable around people, feels at ease with bees. The apian approach to life, admirable in its single-mindedness, makes human existence appear imperfect and burdensome. He falls in love with a girl who wears a pleated skirt. He never speaks to her but he feels her presence as a spatial relationship his body cannot avoid. She disappears one moonlit evening magically climbing the wall of a house. In the meantime, Philip, a 27-year-old pathologist meets Maria, a woman whose eyes, we are told, are like fog. Philip proposes to Maria as if driven by some mysterious compulsion. They marry and have children, the twins Valentin and Margarita. … And the story continues, accumulating archetypal events and relationships, until the fates of all its seven protagonists become tied in one existential knot. In its scalpel-worthy precision and succinctness, and in its psychological astuteness, Stambolova’s novel can be compared with Albert Camus’s L’Etranger. Yet, unlike the latter, This Is the Way It Happens is not a manifesto, nor a “philosophical novel.” As the author herself claims in her brief introduction, the book aims to be “the story of everyone,” and everyone’s story is a love story in which “one,” as a singular individual, plays the part assigned to him or her by chance. An openly allegorical assemblage of simple stories, This Is the Way It Happens is both highly readable and profoundly meaningful – the mark of a true masterpiece.
1. Little Boys and Their Parents
4. Bees and Their Friends
5. Brothers and Sisters
7. Digital Worlds
8. Fathers and Their Professions
9. The Hero’s Prize
10. After the Fairy Tale’s End
11. The Twins
13. Maria’s Baby
16. Spiders and Their Webs
18. Girls and Mirrors
19. Back and Forth
23. The Gentleman Mr. V.
24. Even Further Back
25. Night Vigils
26. Serious Matter
27. Small Matter
28. Other Secrets
29. What Should We Do With Each Other
30. That’s What
31. How Storms Rise
32. And How They Die Down
33. Revolution and the Head
36. Tiny Steps
37. Weakness and Breath
38. On the Road
39. Aldehydes and Ketones
40. Love Stuff
41. In the Fog
45. Where from
46. The Thing One Cannot Do Without
48. New Years and Other Kinds of Beginnings
51. Boris, Philip, the Baby and the Others
53. Short Days
54. The Narrow Door
- Elka Konstantinova about Albena Stambolova’s Novel This Is the Way It Happens
- Milena Kirova about Albena Stambolova’s Novel This Is the Way It Happens
- Albena Stambolova: