© Jay Stoumpo

One is a CROWD – Vakis Loizides

Literature as a European mother tongue: In our series “One is a CROWD”, we introduce you to authors from all over Europe who will be involved in the CROWD omnibus reading tour, taking place from May to July 2016, featuring 100 authors who will be travelling through 15 European countries. We asked them 3 questions about text production, reception and mediation. In case you were wondering what a literary activist from Nicosia looks like, meet Vakis Loizides!  

Do you see yourself as an author? Are you the originator and main authority of your text? If not, who is, if anyone at all?

The word author is very restrictive and unpoetic for me. How can one have the authority of a text, that arises from interaction and realities that are shared with the unknown. Readers are somehow co-authors of a poem. They continue its journey without my presence from the moment it leaves me.

I feel more of a house builder. My work grows organically. A house has several lives after it has been delivered to its first owner. So a poem has a special meaning to every single individual without restrictions and obstacles.

Do you like reader comments and feedback to your texts? What could be the consequences of social editing?

Constructive criticism and discussions on my work are of great value. These help me to discover unknown domains of my work. Poetry is a form which does not only address the elite. The spontaneous reaction of readers is more genuine than that of more thoughtful and better formulated comments.

What is your favourite literary spot in Nicosia? (literary venue, bar, meeting spot etc.)

My favourite literary spot is Nicosia within the Venetian Walls, the last divided capital of Europe. A place where layers of history with signs of different civilizations make it so unique. I am inspired by the narrow streets reminding me of a medieval Renaissance and even Ottoman era. The dynamic coexistence of various nationalities and different customs is highly inspiring.

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