#KLF19: An Exclusive Interview with Alexander Snegirev

Alexander Snegirev at Kolkata Literature Festival


Q: What can you tell us about your novel Petroleum Venus?

Snegirev: It’s about a young father of a guy with a mental problem. It’s a little bit private to my private story and it very important to me, the story. But, when I wrote it, I was trying to write something for other people. It was the first book which started to be famous and it is translated in English. Actually, it’s just one book of mine which is translated in English. A few books are translated in French, in Polish, in Thailand, in Chinese but in English just this one.
Q: Are the stories that your write and the characters in it are they autobiographical?

Snegirev: Yes, they are autobiographical. I think all writers write about themselves but sometimes you use characters, and sometimes you write about yourself, and I prefer both but mostly I write straight about myself. I think our life is so interesting, it is strange to invent something because you have so many things to write about in your private life. I think it’s important. For me, literature is not books, it’s a one way of living. So, when I write about something that touch my heart, then it’s not writing, it’s possibility to show other people what I love, what is important for me. Literature is just the way.

Q: What influenced/ inspired you in your writings?

Snegirev: It’s funny but for a moment I feel the influence of an Indian writer, Arundhati Roy. I know only her first book, I didn’t read her second book yet, but her point of view influenced me. And if you ask me ask about the subjects which influenced me, it can be everything. I love people, I love strange people, and I love the strange decisions which we make every day. It’s like a goldmine for me I use it for my writing.


Interviewed by Ahona Das


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