I grew up in a Ukrainian immigrant family in Utica, New York. I feel that Upstate New York is a rich setting deserving of more representation in fiction and have written two novels set there.
My latest book, Brood: The Dirt, is a supernatural comic drama set among the Ukrainian immigrant community of Utica. A monster born of the Old Country wreaks havoc on the Ukrainians, provoking a heroic yet bumbling response.
Upstate Mob Story, my first novel, is a supernatural thriller depicting a small-town Mafia succession struggle infiltrated by mysterious external forces.
I was inspired to write by my grandfather, Ivan Smolij, an emigre Ukrainian novelist of some note, with seven books to his name.
I studied Ancient Greek and Musicology in college (two unrelated minors). I no longer use the Greek but continue to play the bass and piano in bands. By day I write software for a library services company. I live in Ipswich, Massachusetts with my wife, Peggy, and our four children.
Thank you for reading!
Author photo thanks to Mike Connolly