Their working methods and writing habits.
Ten questions addressed to eleven male and eleven female writers.
Ten questions specially created by the students of the Master of Publishing at the University of Bologna.
They are students in Bologna like Patrick Zaki.
The book is dedicated to him and the proceeds of the sale will go to Amnesty International, which is fighting for Zaki’s early return to freedom and to Italy, where he studied before being unjustly arrested in Egypt.
The non-profit book is the brainchild of Paola Italia, professor of Italian Literature and Modern Philology, and the director of the Master’s program, Anna Maria Lorusso.
The book is published by a university publisher, Bononia University Press (BUP).
The university mobilizes for one of its students, detained without an official reason, and hopes that as soon as possible Zaki can return to Bologna to continue his studies.
The writing tries to be a civil testimony and at the same time it makes us enter the mechanisms of the writing of authors who are often reluctant to tell their stories.
I was a student at the University of Bologna.
And I had such a good time during the four years of the course that the day of my graduation I dreamt of it as one of my worst nightmares.
A wonderful and intense time was ending and I was aware that there would never be such a perfect time in my life again.
I wish that was the case with Zaki.
The book “A carte scoperte” has multiple planes of interpretation.
The most obvious is to investigate in the mechanisms of the writing of authors who are much loved by the public. An opportunity for those who love to write or simply read. The book is accompanied by images of handwritten sheets with ideas, outlines, notes of the authors.
Almost all of them use pen and paper in the planning stage, then transfer to digital.
Craft work on the idea evidently needs concrete gestures to fix the first stage of the work.
Each writer describes the first stages, the rewrites, the rethinks.
The book also asks how the act of writing takes place and here we are surprised by the variety of places and ways.
There are those who write in total chaos, in noise, anywhere in the house or a city. There are those who write on the train and those who prefer to read.
There are those who try to write in faraway places, in silent rooms.
On desks full of objects, with piles of material. Some do it lying down, on their stomach.
There is no such thing as “the” method, just like in the visual arts.
I find it interesting to study the habits of others, as if to understand if one’s own talent is finding the right way to express itself.
Another level of reading is I would say revolutionary, and I mentioned it just now.
It is rare to read about contemporary authors who lend themselves to sharing their working methods, habits, daily routines, readings, who they are inspired by or influenced by.
All of these writers do so united to remember a student who cannot be a student because he was unjustly locked up in prison.
How then to fight for the liberation of Zaki?
With culture, with a book.
This is a really interesting level to read these 144 pages.
The University of Bologna, students, writers, united in a fundraiser that uses writing and therefore culture, as an ancient and always revolutionary tool that is the transmission of thought.
To write is to communicate, to read is to revolutionize one’s life.
The city of Bologna, known for centuries for its university, bets on culture to amplify Zaki‘s story.
My message is simple: the book is very interesting, buy it, give it as a gift.
Culture helps freedom, always.
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