The 5 Ws with Oana Avasilichioaei

August 26, 2015

Who is your favourite author, or the author who's had the biggest impact on you (personally or professionally)?

One of my favourites is Paul Celan.

What one book would you recommend that people read?

I recently read (or reread) Christa Wolf’s Cassandra and Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s The First Circle: both magnificent!

Why is writing important to you?

One of the reasons is because language shapes consciousness and thus the very way one sees, understands, imagines, creates the world. It feels as important to life as breathing.

Where do you write, and do you have any rituals, special implements, etc.?

I write in different parts of the house, at various desks, sometimes on one of my balconies, and occasionally in a favourite café. I have no rituals, but I prefer the morning hours, and I always begin with a pen and a notebook.

When did you decide you were a writer, or when did you first feel like a writer?

I first started writing around the age of fifteen or sixteen, when certain thoughts or images or fragments of sentences began occupying my mind and somehow demanding that they be written down, eventually shaped into something. But I decide that I am a writer (or not) every day.


Oana Avasilichioaei is the author of We, Beasts (2012), feria: a poempark (2008) and Abandon (2005), as well as the translator of Louise Cotnoir's Les Iles (The Islands) and several other works. As a poet and translator, her work explores history, geography, public space, textual architecture, multilingualism and textual and collaborative performance. She works in multiple languages and media (French, English, Romanian; poetry and sound). Find her online at


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