October 4, 2011 stefivos

Interview: “Happiness means to ask for nothing”

What is your favourite quote?

“The higher you fly, the smaller you appear to those who can’t fly” by F. Nietzsche.

 

What did inspire you to write “A Life In A Moment”?

It is actually the book the hero of my first ever story is writing.  When I myself started to write it, at the age of 16, I had thought it would be an interesting and challenging game to play, but in the end the story came into life in a different way I had expected.

 

What is that you would like your readers to think after finishing the book -which has, indeed, an unpredictable ending-?

This ending is mainly the reason why I wrote the book, in the first place.  I created the story, based on the concept revealed in the end, and this is why the ending could not be any different.  Beyond that, the book tries to tell the readers what real life is yelling at them, but they don’t pay attention to, which is that everything can change within a moment.  That everything is possible and it all happens for a reason.. or not.  Life is a stream; you just let yourself in, ready to go anywhere it takes you.

 

How did you start writing?

I remember myself in primary school folding A4 sheets of paper, so that they look like books, in the interior of which I wrote fairy-tales.  Later, I started writing short childhood stories, then mystery stories, until the age of 15 when I fell in love for the first time.  Everything changed.  I started writing with my mind, my soul and my heart, and I never stopped since then.  Finally, my love remained unfulfilled, but I had already gained a lot of other precious things.

 

Out of the books you’ve written, which one do you like the most?

I think I enjoy the most the one I’m writing now, a historical novel, entitled “The Secret of Levante”.  I am excited because it takes place in the island where I grew up, Zakynthos, during the World War II, which means I have to combine and recompose memories, narrations, fictional images and information from very hard historical research.

 

If you could go back in time, what profession would you choose?

It would be something related to the sea; maybe teaching sailing..

 

Which is your very first thought of the day?

It’s the portrayal of a diver, who is preparing himself to dive: putting on his mask, adjusting the respirator and, finally, diving.  He doesn’t know what the bottom of that sea looks like, but he keeps descending.  I’m the diver and the new day is the bottom.

 

And what is your very last thought before falling asleep?

I always fall asleep hoping that the next day will give me all these the previous years failed to bring.

 

What do you love in people the most?

Their contradictions.  When they disprove themselves; when the thick-skinned bursts into tears, the close-fisted gives things away, the lover becomes enslaved.  This is how stories are born, when someone surprises you, when they react other than expected..

 

What is that you don’t forgive to people?

The misery.  The negativity and the nihilism.  Not the pessimism.  Pessimism hides a dignity; it is an experienced optimism, as a saying goes.  Misery, on the other hand, is the 8th deadly sin, for me.  It won’t let you enjoy life.  When pleasures come, what you only think is that they will not last for long.  You always look for the negatives, and when you find them, you’re delighted for being right.  The only dream a miserable may have is, when they die, to resurrect only in order to return and tell you “See?? I had already told you, this place sucks!”

 

What does happiness mean to you?

For me, happiness is the strength to ask for nothing.  To feel you already have everything you need, even if you have nothing.  It’s difficult nowadays, when you always feel you have to have artificial needs, but if you manage to stay out of it and to look inside you, you’ll realize that you only need 2-3 things to taste happiness..

 

What, do you think, is the worst that can happen to someone?

To wake up in a morning and realize that their life has slipped away, that they’re sad and miserable, but they’re late, with not enough time to fix things up.  Once you feel this way, you’re dead, but at the same time, you have to keep carrying around your empty flesh, pretending it’s full of life… What could be worse than that?

 

What do people nowadays need in order to feel happy?

They need to seek and value the beauty of small moments, to give importance to minor things.  To a child’s naive question, to a hurried kiss, to a grandma’s story, to a hot coffee, to a clever friendly joke, to the summer breeze, to an orgasm… Is there any other peak moment in love than the orgasm itself, unifying the body and the spirit?  This is how we need to consider our routine: like making love with our own life…

 

When was the last time you laughed and what was it with?

I always laugh with some statements of people who take themselves very seriously, so I laugh everyday.

 

How do you spend your spare time?

Either doing something really creative either stuck helpless in front of a screen.  I think, I need both, but of course not in the same proportions.

 

Which is the book you would like to have written?

“A Hundred Years Of Solitude” by Gabriel Garcia Marquez.  I think, if I had written that one, I would have stopped writing afterward.

 

What book are you reading this period?

I am currently continuing my research for my second novel, so I read everything that has to do with the Second World War in Greece, and specifically, in my island.

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stefivos Nothing to declare.