Aleksandar Hemon Quotes
Aleksandar Hemon (born September 9, 1964) is a Bosnian-born American fiction writer, essayist, and critic. His best known novels are Nowhere Man (2002) and The Lazarus Project (2008)
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When I came to America, I was already a writer, already published in Bosnia. I was planning to go back, but I had no choice but to stay here after the civil war, so I enrolled at Northwestern in a master's program and studied American literature.
I have two homes, like someone who leaves their hometown and/or parents and then establishes a life elsewhere. They might say that they're going home when they return to see old friends or parents, but then they go home as well when they go to where they live now. Sarajevo is home, Chicago is home.
The privilege of a middle-class, stable, bourgeois life is that you can pretend that you are not complicated and project yourself as a solid, uncomplicated person, with refined life goals and achievements.
In Bosnian, there's no distinction in literature between fiction and nonfiction; there's no word describing that.
I like to blur the line between fact and fiction, but not to condescend to the reader by enmeshing her/him into some sort of a postmodern coop.
For people who are displaced, you can reconstruct the story of your life from the objects you have access to, but if you don't have the objects then there are holes in your life. This is why people in Bosnia - if anyone was running back into a burning house, it was to salvage photos.
I read everything I could find in English - Twain, Henry James, Hemingway, really everything. And then after a while I started writing shorter pieces in English, and one of them got published in a literary magazine and that's how it got started. After that, graduate school didn't seem very important.
New York is the Hollywood of the publishing industry, complete with stars, starlets, suicidal publishers/producers, intrigues, and a lot of money.
I actually didn't listen to the Beatles song 'Nowhere Man' when I was writing my book of the same name. What I listened to a lot was 'Abbey Road.' Its disjointedness and its readiness to confuse only to delight were inspiring to me.
When I found myself in the U.S., and the war was at full swing in Bosnia, I read for survival - it was a means of thought resuscitation.
I tend to wait for true stories to mature into fiction. Most of my fiction grew out of a long-germinating real-life situation.
I wanted us to share the sense that the number of wrong moves far exceeds the number of good moves, to share the frightening instability of the correct decision, to bond in being confounded.
I cannot live or write without music. It stimulates the normally dormant parts of my brain that come in handy when constructing fiction.
When I look at my old pictures, all I can see is what I used to be but am no longer. I think: What I can see is what I am not.
Only those who do not care, only those who find a way to diminish or extinguish the value of other human beings, survive wars without damage and speak of warrior honor afterward.