Photo by Lucia Gardin, with reprint permission from the Center for Information on Literature

Pavol Rankov

  PLACES THAT ARE NOT ON THE MAP   (an excerpt)   The clock dial on a shelf above the table showed 8:30pm, but it was still light...
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Víťo Staviarsky, Balla, Uršuľa Kovalyk, Michal Hvorecký and Pavel Vilikovský.

Slovak Fiction Week: Into the Spotlight

Try to ask even a very well-read English-speaking literary type to name a Slovak writer and you will likely be met with a blank stare. "Well, Milan Kundera was from Czechoslovakia . . . does that count?"


Ondrej Stefanik

I’m on display here, you fool. I’m wearing my best dress, simple, posh, fresh like fresh fruit, flammable, cling-wrapped to protect it from vagrants, cool like a crouching leopard with taut muscles. And the first words you shoot at me are Hi, Paula, feeling better now?


Jan Rozner

What he couldn’t afford to do was attend his wife’s funeral where quite a few people might see him. He could not go to his wife’s funeral one day and phone Highly Placed the next. That might ruin everything.

Photo by Mária Staviarska

Vito Staviarsky

He invited Sabina to dance, reached out and pulled her up. Karolko sat in the wardrobe playing Romany dance tunes but Olda asked for Roll Out the Barrel and later the Firemen’s Song. They danced on the table making the cats run for cover under the wardrobe, meowing mournfully.

Photo by Pavel Kastl

Pavel Vilikovsky

As far as I’m aware, none of the big shots in the Third Reich was a sadist.

Ursula 4

Ursula Kovalyk

Nothing matters except the movement itself. The way I walk. I am aware of the present. I am here and now.

Photo by Eliška Balážová


He examined my testicles and after feeling them for a while he made an announcement that turned out to be quite crucial later on: “Don’t procreate, comrade! Don’t ever procreate because you will father a beast.”

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