September 4, Peter Høeg, Danish writer, took part in the translation seminar and delivered a press conference at SPbU. He met journalists, with the assistance of Elena Krasnova, who has translated all his books into Russian, and told about his attitude to his readers and Russian culture.

Peter Høeg is living an aloof live, mediates a lot and takes a retreat every six months, a so-called period of seclusion for the purposes of prayer and meditation. Surrounded by nature, he writes his books. He admits that imagery conversation with his readers is very important for him: “I never feel lonely, when I am writing, and I have no idea what a “lonely writer” means. For me, a language is a sort of blood which brings together all hearts”.

Those who love admire his books impressed him a lot. “When I was signing the books, I saw a unique heartiness in Russian readers. This is my first trip to Russia, so I have no time yet to contemplate about it. Never have I had such feelings. I think that you have your own understanding of heartiness. All writers are hoping to meet it”, — he said.

So close collaboration with Russia is so successful primarily thanks to Elena Krasnova, Head of the Department of Scandinavian and Dutch Philology at SPbU. In the late 1990s, the publishing house «Inapress” published his book “Miss Smilla's Feeling for Snow”, which was the first of his books translated onto Russian. Elena Krasnova is the only Russian translator who render his books.

On the language

Denmark is a small country, as few as 5 mln people speak Danish. Collaboration with the talented translators is a very high priority with me, and it helps me to go beyond Denmark. My Danish is highly sophisticated. It is a real pleasure to have found a person who can translate my books into Russian. Be published in Russia is a privilege for me.

Danish writer Peter Høeg

He told about his attitude to the Russian classical literature. Peter Høeg  deeply admires Gorky and Dostoevsky, but he knows them only in translations. He likes the sound of Russian, and long ago, when he was a student, he was thinking about learning Russian, but it seemed to him rather complicated.

He has visited Russian at 60 years old, is planning to spend several days in St Petersburg and later to have a trip to Valaam to get insight into how the monks live there.