Another writer providing Bop Dead City with international flair, Fikret wows me in two distinctive ways:
1. As far as I know (it’s not like I keep statistics on these things), he’s the most persistent writer to be published in Bop Dead City. “Running with Red” was his fourth try. The previous three were all good, just not right for us. I wouldn’t be surprised if they all got published in superior journals. Maybe I should have asked that….
2. He learned English in his mid-20s. I find it incredible he could lap other writers in the mastery of the English language when many of them had a twenty year or so head start.
Describe your work in 25 words or less.
A fellow writer from my writing group described my writing as a mix between Raymond Carver and Jack London. Most of my stories feature people from the margins and animals, mostly dogs.
Tell us about your story “Running with Red.”
The story is partly based on the real life experience of a refugee I knew who arrived with me to Australia from Bosnia in 1994.
Who or what inspires you to write?
I often deal with my real life fears in my writing. So, I’d say my fears make me write.
What are your thoughts on print vs. online publications?
I think most people prefer to hold a hard copy of their work in their hands. Being published online doesn’t feel as good as being published in print.
What are you working on right now?
I’ve got a few short stories in the works at the moment.
Do you have a website/blog for your work?
No. I’m not on any of social media sites. I’m a bit of a luddite that way.
Where can we read you next?
In the Minnesota Review, Sheepshead Review and Antipodes (all USA) and Sleepers and Bide Journal in Australia.
Any advice for your fellow writers?
If you believe that your writing is good enough to be published you must submit to as many places as you can. It’s like fishing with a net. The wider the net the more chances you have catching a fish.
Finally, anything else you’d like to add?
Persistence pays off.
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