|Aslı Dağarcıklıoğlu||Star Newspaper Book Supplement||02.10.2009|
The author, Aslı Der has been nominated for the International Board on Books for Young People – IBBY 2010 Honor List with her book Big Trap. “Being in the IBBY Honor List is like being the hero in one of my favorite books; “It’s exciting and exhilarating, encouraging to embark on new adventures, to write new books,” she says.
The author, Aslı Der has been nominated for the 2010 Honor List of the International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY), the world’s largest children’s and youth books organization, with her children’s book Big Trap. “I was honored to be nominated as a writer for IBBY’s Honor List 2010,” the author added. Der’s book was selected as the Best Children’s Book in the Children’s Books of the Year 2007 selections by the Turkish Association of Children’s Publications (ÇGYD), which is also the Turkey Representative of IBBY. Der, who is a graduate of Boğaziçi University, Department of Philosophy, points out that Sheroks the Little Witch, 3 Journeys to Danger and Big Trap books carry the depth and richness of her philosophy education. We had a chat with author Aslı Der about children’s and youth literature.
First of all, congratulations. You were nominated for the IBBY Honor List 2010 in the writer category. What are your feelings? What is the significance of this situation for you?
I am very happy to be a candidate for the IBBY Honor List. This nomination made me think of the books I read in my childhood. The biggest dream I had at that time was to one day hold my own book in my hands, my books being read in someone’s house, just like the authors I read with great pleasure when I was a little girl. Taking part in the IBBY Honor List is like being a hero in one of my favorite books; exciting and exhilarating, encouraging to embark on new adventures, to write new books.
So what do you think was the factor in your nomination to the IBBY Honor List?
I carefully choose every book I fictionalize, every character I create, and every word I use. I believe that any work done with care and hard work will be successful. While I am writing my books, I work hard, with pleasure. I see my nomination as a writer for the IBBY Honor List 2010 as an award given to me by every word I chose, every book I fictionalized, and every character I imagined.
Writing is a fun process
In your books, you invite children to a fantasy world. Why did you choose the fantasy world?
I see fantasy literature as a huge, colorful and exciting playground; a playground where consistency is the unchanging and most important rule. Writing is a fun and enjoyable process for me. While writing books, I try to stay away from the worries of being instructive, I try to use the language carefully, to choose the words correctly and build a strong story world. I am trying to use the philosophy education I have received in my books.
What do you aim to change in children’s lives in your books or do you have such a goal?
Wherever we live in the world, whatever language we use, I think that we, as human beings, actually share similar worries, happiness, sorrows and joys. I have no purpose in children’s life to change this or that. I only write my books without ignoring their curiosity towards life, their natural questioning, and their endless imagination.
What do you think should be done and overcome in Turkey from the perspective of a writer in children and youth publications?
I think that children and youth literature has developed in our country with an increasing production in recent years. However, in order to achieve better, it is necessary to work harder, write more, produce more, and offer good books to children and young people to read. I believe this will increase further in the future.
Will there be a continuation of your successful books?
I am working on my new book. Another fantasy children’s book. It will be published by my publishing house Günışığı Kitapligi in 2010. My goal is still the same, for the reader to read my book with as much pleasure as I got writing it.