Meet the independent author behind the dark sapphic fantasy book When Two Roads Meet

by | Feb 26, 2024 | People | 2 comments

Saige Caljouw was an avid reader in junior high. She basked in character-driven books and movies. When she was younger, she used to write quite frequently but like most of us, she recalls that “life got in the way.”

Caljouw is in her third year pursuing a bachelor of science, but hopes to transfer to the bachelor of arts for a psychology major and a biology minor. 

“I originally wanted to do something in medicine, so I was a biology major and a psych minor,” says Caljouw. “The reason I wanted to go into medicine is the brain, the mind, and how it works, so I took a few psych classes and realized that’s where I gravitate more towards.” Caljouw says that she always saw writing as more of a hobby and that pursuing medicine seemed like a more “practical passion.”

The book When Two Worlds Meet was based on a story that Caljouw wrote in grade 8. “It was the very first novel that I finished. I filled a little notebook from start to end, and I was very proud of that.”

An intense breakup served as a catalyst for the author’s creative process that made her begin to write her book. “[The breakup] is kind of how I started going on this reflection of the soul journey,” she says. “I got back into writing and started taking it seriously.” She decided to pick up the story she started writing in Grade 8 and use her gained life experiences to build off of it. “I figured that I could pick up something old and do something better with it — make it into something plausible and real,” she says, “It was very cathartic to me.”

Going by the pen name S. Victoria Nakamun, Caljouw loves the thrill she gets from the ability to create worlds through storytelling. She says that is the reason she loves the fantasy genre. 

The book is a dark sapphic fantasy in which two women from feuding kingdoms — one with magic and one without it — are forced to travel across the continent together to further the only goals they’ve ever known, which is fulfilling others’ expectations. “One is destined to save the world, and the other is destined to destroy it, but their growing feelings for each other begin to flourish,” says Caljouw. 

Through writing her first novel, Caljouw has found her sense of self. Seeing that the characters she wrote were bold enough to follow the desires of her heart, she was able to do the same. 

There is content in the book that deals with concepts like figuring out who you are as a person without a certain religion or identity. “It’s something that doesn’t suit you, but it’s all you’ve ever known,” says Caljouw. “Dealing with that and putting a character through that situation was very real to me and cathartic to write this journey of this character saying ‘no, we could be something different,’ and it’s not easy to go on that road, but she does it anyway.” 

She recalls struggling with her sexuality for most of her life and how it affected her sense of self. 

“I had dated men my whole life and was in a relationship with a man at the time, but I had these feelings for my best friend that I didn’t know how to work through, and writing this was an outlet. Writing this made me realize what I wanted to do with my real life,” she says.

On top of writing a novel, Caljouw is a full-time student and a part-time manager at a breakfast restaurant. Caljouw decided to go indie and self-publish. The whole process of writing and publishing the book took about three years. “On my way to querying, I got an editor, and I started playing around with covers and eventually came up with a design that I actually liked, taught myself how to format, and made connections in the author world,” she says.

Caljouw, her best friend, and her partner all had a part in creating the cover for the book. “It’s one of the reasons I decided to self-publish because this is something you can’t do with a traditional publisher,” she says. 

Calijow has sold over 85 copies so far and is in the process of writing the sequel. 


Corrections Feb. 29, 2024: Caljouw’s last name was adjusted with proper spelling throughout. Also corrected the title of the novel in both the headline and article.

Aajah Sauter

The Griff

2 Comments

  1. Anonymous

    Hey! Loved reading this, I dont know if you noticed but you put two different titles for the book one in the title of the article and one in the contents and both are not the actual title of the novel. Nakamun titled her novel When Two Roads Meet. 🙂
    Also you spell her real last name incorrectly in the beginning but then correct it to the proper name Caljouw. I’m a friend of the author I would just like to bring her hard work justice.

    Reply
    • Thai Sirikoone

      Thanks for your comment, we will make corrections shortly.

      Reply

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