On the publication of ”Scrittore e Assassino” in Italy, La Stampa reporter Marta Ottaviani interviewed Ahmet Altan. Banned from all written communication with the outside world, Altan responded to Ottaviani’s questions orally during his weekly one-hour visit with his lawyers at the Silivri Prison Number 9. Here is the full text of the interview in Italian. 

La Stampa – Tuttolibri / 28 January, 2017 Rome

Ahmet Altan si trova dietro le sbarre da quattro mesi senza che gli sia stata formulata un’accusa precisa, solo quella di aver mandato «messaggi subliminali» prima del fallito golpe dello scorso 15 luglio. Un motivo per il quale, in Turchia, sono finite in prigione o hanno perso il posto di lavoro migliaia di persone. TuttoLibri è riuscito a raggiungere Ahmet Altan nel carcere dove è rinchiuso tramite i suoi avvocati.

Continue reading ““Non so che ne sarà di me, scrivere mi dà speranza””

Ahmet Altan: The government of this country has always chasing artists. Today, they do the same thing in a more violent manner. Because the current administration does not only hate art but also fears it.

Interviewed by Özlem Karahan. Published by K24 on 15 October 2015. Turkish version of the interview can be viewed here.

Ahmet Altan: Taking sides handicaps writing. Makes you get away from the truth. If you favor one of your characters over others, it doesn’t work. I am the God of my own book. And I have to be as good and as bad as God.

Interviewed by Feridun Andaç. Published in Cumhuriyet on 28 August 2015. Andaç’s analysis of the first three volumes of the Ottoman Quartet and his interview with Ahmet Altan can be read here in Turkish.


Ahmet Altan: I want to dedicate all my time to writing novels. I love writing novels. Your asking me if I will go back to journalism is like a man interrupting me as I am making love to ask me to push a cart. No, I don’t want to push the cart. I love making love, damn it! A novelist should not become a journalist. Any society that forces a novelist to become a journalist is a society with handicaps.

Çınar Oskay interviewed Ahmet Altan in March 2015 to discuss his then-recently published novel Ölmek Kolaydır Sevmekten. The interview, which also focused on the day’s political issues and Altan’s journalistic career was published in Hürriyet‘s Sunday supplement. The full text can be read here in Turkish.

Ahmet Altan: You begin each new novel with the same excitement, with the same desire, with the same pain, with the same fears, with the same sleeplessness, with the same tormentations, with the same self-bashing. One moment you say, ”Who am I? Nothing. I don’t exist. I’m not a writer.” A few minutes later, ”I am magnificient. There’s no one like me. I am out of this world. Who can write like this?” You live like a madman.

Moderated by Çiğdem Mater, this conversation with Ahmet Altan took place at the Mithat Alam Film Center of the Bosphorous University in Istanbul. The full text is here in Turkish.