Friday, March 13, 2015

Interview with Irene Even, author of A Life of the Twentieth Century

Today Historical Tapestry brings to you an author interview from Irene Even.

A Life of the Twentieth Century is written in the third person and fictional names, but all events and places are true. This is Irene's life story.

1) Why did you decide to write a memoir?

The writing of my memoir wasn't so much a decision but a natural follow up to a life that needed a rational interpretation of all that I have lived through.

2) Was it difficult to remember some of the painful incidents of your childhood when writing the book?

My painful memories were hidden so deep inside of me that most of the time I was not aware of them. It wasn't until I sat in front of the computer that those hidden memories appeared to me on the screen as if ​it​ was a new revelation.

3) Would you consider your book inspirational?

I think that this book is inspirational on so many level​s​ as it points out that no matter what, you always have a choice. It is so easy to slip into the role of the victim, thereby remaining​ a victim. As I look at Aya the way she carries on under all circumstances, I see a very inspirational person​

4) How did you write your book? Did you first jot down all your ​memories​ or did you just decide to write and see what came of it?

The writing of my memoir was the most amazing experience ​for​ me because I had​ never ​known​ what I was going to write about once I set out to do it​. I never kept a diary or made notes; I just sat down in front of the computer and the story ended up​ writing itself, while I was only the facilitator as I worked the key board.

5) Why do you want people to read your story?

When I first wrote my story I didn't have readers in my mind, but now that the story is written I would like people to read it because it is a true and incredible story, even to me​.

6) Writing about past events and family members may cause hurt feelings. Did you worry about what your children would think when you wrote you​r story?

At first I didn't think of anything, because it wasn't clear to me exactly what I was going to write about. However, once the story was told it did occur to me how my children might​ react to it. But when the book was written showed it to them and it was okay.​

7) How long did it take you to write your memoir?

It took me about 4 years

Book Synopsis:

A Life of the Twentieth Century is the story of Aya, who lived through the loss of her parents before the age of 3. At the age of twelve she was sent to a boarding school in Budapest, that closed after one year, because the Nazi army marched into the city.

Aya was left totally alone to face the Nazi occupation, and to experience all the horrors of the war. She faced many life threatening situations, such as prison, bombardment or even the possibility of being executed on the spot, without really comprehending the gravity of it all.

The end of the war was supposed to mean liberation, the return of hope and freedom for most people, however it didn't happen for Aya, who was part of a youth group on her way to Palestine. The destination of this youth group was to reach Italy and the Jewish Brigade. They crossed the Alps on foot from Austria to reach Italy.

As they reached their destination Aya met a soldier from the Jewish Brigade, who was supposed to be her Hero, her Saviour, but turned out to be the devil incarnate. From day one, this soldier of the Jewish brigade took control of Aya's life when she was only 15 years old.

After divorce, destitute and once again alone, she had no direction and almost no hope, when from deep inside her a small voice said; go back to school. It took all her courage to apply to university, where she was accepted and after 5 year was granted a B.A. and a Diploma of Teaching. She spent the rest of her life teaching, and as she contemplated her life she said to herself that if she had had all the choices in the world, she would have chosen teaching.

Author's Bio:

Irene Even was born in Hungary. As a child she lived through the Second World War, using false papers to survive. After the war, she immigrated to Palestine, lived in a Kibbutz, then later married and immigrated to Canada with her family. She returned to Israel to teach English and remained there for twenty-two years. Having written her memoir, A Life of the Twentieth Century, she now lives in retirement in Montreal.

A life of the Twentieth Century is available from Amazon

A review of the book will be published tomorrow.
Image of author courtesy of Debra who blogs at Girl With Camera

No comments:

Post a Comment