Writer in Residence Programme 2010

Uğur Ziya Şimşek visits Amsterdam

1-31 January 2010

Uğur Ziya Şimşek (1980) wrote his first novel Cin Tarikati (Order of Djins) when he was 24.

Frustrated by the big corporate publishing houses who didn’t show any interest in his work he established his own publishing house and non-governmental organisation Sokak Yazarları Hareketi (Movement of Street Writers). He now publishes his own books as well as the works of other young writers he feels related to. This group, which tries to reach new audiences not only via bookstores but also ‘on the streets’, is a new element in Turkey’s literary life. Uğur Ziya Şimşek teaches law at a private institute. In his novels he focuses on political and psychological themes like social exclusion and he tries to show the effect of the big city Istanbul on the individual.

While in Amsterdam Şimşek shares the apartment with fellow country-woman Seray Şahiner who belongs to the same generation of young Turkish writers. They were both invited to the Netherlands by the ngo Urban Cosmopolitans.