Romanian writer Ioana Pârvulescu, Life Begins on Friday, The Future Begins on Monday
♦ Two of this author’s many works:
Oh gosh, Viitorul începe luni(The Future Begins on Monday) by Ioana Pârvulescu (Romanian) is not in English so I’m trying to translate bit-by-bit. I’d bought a copy which was shipped from England as no copies were way down here. Having read Ioana Pârvulescu’s Life Begins on Friday, I know it’ll be most enjoyable. It’s been fun meeting up again with some of the same characters from the newspaper and police in old Bucharest. This reading-translating project may even sharpen my wits!
Life Begins on Friday swept me into a world I may find traces of when eventually I get to Bucharest. My trip’s been put on hold twice due to the pandemic still gripping the world.
The plot takes place during the last 13 days of 1897 but Dan Creţu, alias Dan Kretzu, is a present-day journalist who is hurled back in time by a “mysterious process for just long enough to allow us a wonderful glimpse into a remote, almost forgotten world”
Life Begins on Friday is beautifully written and won for Ioana Pârvulescu the EUROPEAN UNION PRIZE FOR LITERATURE. Life Begins on Friday was translated into English by Alistair Ian Blyth 2016 and was longlisted 2017 for the WARWICK PRIZE FOR WOMEN IN TRANSLATION
Life Begins on Friday a beautiful read. Happily I lent my copy to a friend but, boo-h00, she’s not returned it to me far more than a year later! – says she’s not read it and can’t find it. It’s the fourth precious book treated thus.
Writing and Reading with sand between my toes … Orhan Pamuk, Peter Esterhazy, Harry Sidebottom, Umburto Eco, Ioana Pârvulescu, Delia Owens, Ovid, eclectic collections and, sobering thoughts as I flew over Roumania…
About Me, Books & Things, Quick Sketch in Flight, The Manuscript, Contact Me
A Greek Matinée is a work of fiction which obsessed me for several years right up to this moment which swells and shifts as if I’m possessed. Of March 2022 the manuscript is finished and I’m setting off on the road of finding a Literary Agent! I know it can be long. I’m ready! Oh what joy it will be when you can read your own copy all nicely bound by a great publisher! Who will it be?
A Greek Matinée is a tale set mainly in Greece. In 2016 I’d travelled there to immerse in things most Ancient, walk streets and pathways of our “cradle of western culture”. Prior to flying to Greece I’d been plotting A Greek Matinée, poring over Greek histories, tragedies, comedies (link to Some Books and Stuff Pored over for A Greek Matinée), “sorted out” gods and, hoping to decipher even one word on an ancient stone, I attempted to learn to read Attic Greek one of the ancient languages spoken in some of the then City States. What a thrill when I actually recognised some bits of inscriptions! I’d swum in the Mediterranean Sea too! Seen Poseidon in a whirling fury soaring to the sky.
Yonks ago I’d finished an umpteenth fine-toothcombing and reduction of another story: Tigers in My Teacup which deliberately I put aside for A Greek Matinée which further developed and confirmed my style. My knowledge expanded in great leaps too and maturity blossomed – well, I think so! Tigers and another manuscript now badly need revisits! Maybe those two mss along with all my short stories I wrote as a member of a writing group were my next-level trainer-wheels having long-outgrown the baby-rollers.
I’m a member of Friends of Antiquity at University of Queensland, Royal Queensland Arts Society, Queensland Writers’ Centre, Probus and U3A where in 2019 I attended classes “Ancient Civilisations” as well as poetry and playing chess. Oh yes, and energising-socialising through Greek Dancing. For years I’ve been playing chess – although you’d not believe it if you were to play with me! And now I’m an associate member of Australian Society of Authors.
Sometimes with pleasure I still labour with learning to read Attic Greek and almost daily – joyfully – Roumanian which has some similarities to Turkish of which I’d gained a smattering to survive travelling alone along the Black Sea coast where English seemed mythical after thriving on a marvellous tour and attending calligraphy (Arabic) classes in Istanbul – with the Master Calligrapher!
Oooh, here are Rough Travelling Sketches made inflight to UK 2016 before my adventures in Greece and second splash in Turkey – a military jet roared past but also I saw a plane smoking low down.
Had it been shot as we passed?
Nervously I ask: what will I encounter in Roumania soon!? (Some of the books I’m reading prior to departure are noted below.)
2021 Update:Roumania? last year? this year? Oh dear, due to the ongoing pandemic sadly gripping the world, all overseas travel from here is banned. My paid-up fares and stuff are fluttering as coupons as thousands of other travellers drift in the same predicament. I do hope EVERYBODY, from the stranger on the street to the teams of front-line workers keep as safe as they possibly can – and have access to The Jab, roll up their sleeve for their shots, now that it’s been developed against this deadly virus.
During lockdown 2021, blow me down! I bought online Viitorul începe luni by Ioana Pârvulescu which is printed in Romanian. So, what fun to try to translate it into English, find the right word and concept this fabulous author crafted in her own language. Ioana Pârvulescu is the award-winning writer of Life Begins on Friday.
I’m an avid reader. If the book is of an ancient non-English author, I’m a fan of having the original script opposite English translations like Apollodorus The Library, Ovid Tristia, Ex Ponto, The Art of Love and other Poems, Hesiod The Homeric Hymns which includes Works and Days, Theogony, The Shield of Heracles and other works. But as you see in the above para, not always an English translation is available.
I also enjoy more modern authors, Ioana Pârvulescu, the remarkableDelia Owens,Christian Cameron (I’m really sorry I turned down his invitation to join in an historical re-enactment in Greece prior to my planned trip there), Harry Sidebottom, Umburto Eco,Giles Milton,A.S. Byatt (though I struggle with Possession), of course Orhan Pamuk (got five of his books – did you recognise the right-hand pic of the montage at the top? I took that pic when I visited his … yes … Museum of Innocence); and after Peter Esterházy’sCelestial Harmonies, I loved Jack Faust by Michael Swanwick . And I’ve read The History of Bees by Maja Lunde (which I gave to my daughter-in-law – she’s an apiarist). At first I wasn’t sure what was going on as the first scene is in the future. Deeper in as I slid into the third time-frame going backwards, it clicked. A jolly good read. And there are these:
My Interests: Writing, Reading, Gardening, Swimming in the Sea, Art: painting, drawing, printmaking (intaglio, lino cut, woodcut); Travel, Ancient History, Archaeology, Playing Chess and of course, Family.
There is no end. There is no beginning. There is only the infinite passion of life. Ambrose Bierce
Did you like the photos I took in Athens and Istanbul for my signature strip?
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I do hope you will become a “Follower” of me, my site. Someday you may will find a novel of mine on the shelves of a bookshop 🙂 perhaps your favourite!
If you had difficulty becoming a Follower I apologise. The [Follow Elizabeth] button now works. On a computer it’s at the top right. On a Smart-Phone it’s way down the bottom past Comments! If you’re not a registered WordPress person, the pink form in my In Wet Sands – Ebbs and Flows is easy and works from a Smart-Phone! As with Life nothing stays the same, things change, sometimes at an alarming rate. Sometimes Good. Sometimes Bad. Progress gallops into an even more technical age. Let’s hope the world heals quickly from present chaos. And that people continue to read books, finger Real Paper, hardcopy… oh dear, there is a generation risen, and netting in others, who prefer on-the-go-electronic-versions. But I like the smell of books, the feel of them in my hands…