Did you always have a premonition that one day you would be a writer?
I didn’t exactly have a premonition, but I wanted it so much, I dreamed about it. While other kids identified with characters from the books we had all read, I remember identifying with the authors. In my story I Will Be a Writer I recorded my first “experience” of this kind, when in the classroom I declared or “admitted” that I would be a writer, on which occasion I was ridiculed. It was actually worse than publicly saying that I was in love with a girl in the class. Yes, I have always read a lot and it seems to me I have always wanted to be a writer. Since my early days when I didn't even know exactly what the profession of a writer entails.
You have a successful literary career as a writer in the Croatian language: poet, essayist, novelist... You also translate from German. Could you give us an idea of what you are working on now and what your plans are.
This year I turned 60, and I don't even dare write how many of my books have been published. I get frightened by the number: about 50 books: poetry, prose, essays, novels, short stories, diaries, translations, and many of them were published in several editions. In the coming years six of my books of selected works will be published, and at a steady pace: one book a year. And those books are fairly big, fairly thick. So I can say that in terms of books published I have quite a large and varied output. This year a book of my poetry is coming out in Zagreb, as well as a collection of newspaper columns which will be published there, and then Documents of the Bosnian Franciscans from the 19th Century, which I have been preparing for many years. All these things have been ready for a long time. And now I am writing a new novel and I am working on a collection of short stories... While my selected works are in the process of being published. New selections will contain travel diaries, a novel, poetry...