Alice G. Aliferi was born in Athens, going on to study German literature, History and Journalism. She has worked in book publications for many years.
Fifteen years of her life were spent working as a managing editor for a magazine. In her leisure time, Aliferi has travelled the globe – something she enjoys immensely. Aliferi also enjoys learning about new cultures and learning foreign languages – and her enthusiasm for history never waned, either.
Our writer Nick Bishop interviewed Alice G. Aliferi to find out what inspired her to write her novel Love, Rock and Crime.
So, tell me a little bit about yourself.
I live in a corner of the world called Greece, which has been strongly impacted by the current economic crisis and the phenomenon of migration. We are experiencing our Greek and European community in the process of change. Our destinies are influenced, and it is difficult to remain indifferent to the misery around us. So, I try to make myself useful by helping people in need. I also study history and travel to other countries to get to know new cultures. That helps me understand our race. And I write, of course.
What inspired you to write the crime novel?
I believe the act of writing is related to empathy, and most novel authors – consciously or not – are influenced by each and every story they have heard. A random conversation with a Greek homicide detective, who claimed that many of his colleagues joined the police force due to lack of better opportunities moved me to write Love, Rock and Crime. “Once you’re in the police,” he told me, “it’s difficult to pursue university studies”. His words gave birth to Savvas Kallinis, a young man who became police detective after he was forced to interrupt his studies in medicine.
Did any of your own life experiences contribute to the book?
I think the fact that I started a new career more than twice in my life, with success, contributed to the book. After attending university seminars in Modern German Literature, Journalism and History of Theatre, I worked in various film laboratories. Later, I founded a German-Greek kindergarten, as well as a boutique with educational toys, before finally being employed as a photo editor and staff coordinator for several book and magazine publishers.
What was your target audience when writing the book?
There is a distance between the novel a writer plans to compose, the novel the reader expects to read, and the end product. That’s why I didn’t focus on this question. I just wrote.
Do you see yourself writing a sequel to this book? If so, how do you see your main characters life expanding?
Savvas and Avra, the main characters in Love, Rock and Crime live in my novel and in my heart. Perhaps, one day, they will nudge me to write a sequel. For the moment, I am working on a totally different novel: a funny story about an egocentric top model, a delinquent saxophonist and a mysterious young woman from the Philippines who turns their lives upside down.
Do you have a message for the readers of your novel?
The main character of Love, Rock and Crime is a homicide detective. While solving ugly cases – there are five crime stories in my book – he struggles to keep his soul sane and safe. Love and knowledge are the weapons he uses to seek a better future. I believe that every reader will perceive the optimistic message which awaits him at the end of the story.
Will you be promoting your book?
Since I live so far away from my readers, I am not able to personally promote it in English-speaking countries, or have the opportunity to meet some of the potential readers. My only communication channel is my personal Facebook, and the novel’s Facebook Love, Rock and Crime. I really enjoy posting my tips for novice and aspiring writers, communicating with book friends, and sharing thoughts or comments. This kind of communication offers me love, knowledge, and vision.
I realise you like travelling the globe and learning other language. Where do you call home right now?
I’m glad to have journeyed to most Arab countries because, right now, their region is under fire. My most exceptional experiences were in Yemen and Japan, and my most recent travels were to Norway, Albania and Bulgaria. The reality is that I spend half the year in Athens, but I consider myself a citizen of the world.
What is it that about history that captivates you?
For me, reading history is travelling in the past, comprehending the present and being given a deeper understanding of my existence. I’m interested in history generally. I have participated in seminars about Global Religions, World History, German and New Greek History. This year I’m following two courses, one on the Hellenistic Period, and one on Greek Philosophy.
Going back to the book, are there any crime writers you like? Did their works influence your first novel?
Reading books has influenced me in innumerable ways, but I can’t say that a particular author has marked me. I admire Michael Connelly’s haunted characters, Christopher Brookmyre’s satiric mood, Lawrence Block’s urban darkness, James Elroy’s sharp prose, Ken Bruen’s gloomy style, Robert B. Parker’s third-person-narrative, James Lee Burke’s realism, William McIlvanney’s rough poetry… the list goes on! I like many crime genre authors, because each one has a different gift.
Well, we wish you every success with this book. Thank you for your time!
Thank you! It was a pleasure speaking with you. I wish you many fascinating interviews, and to all lovers of novels, ‘bon voyage’ as they embark on an unforgettable journey to their own inner world.
Feature by Nick Bishop
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