Alexei Bayer was born in Moscow and lives in New York. His short stories have appeared in New England Review and Readings/Chtenia, among other journals. A collection titled Eurotrash was published in a Russian translation in 2004. He translates Russian literature into English and writes fiction, as well as articles on economics, business and finance, in both languages. His story “An Excursion” appeared in the Spring 2011 issue of KR.
KR: What’s one book, contemporary or otherwise, that you wish you had written?
AB: Dangerous Liaisons by Cholderos de Laclos. It might have lost some of its luster, however, since I’d have to write it in Russian or English. My French is poor.
KR: Have classroom experiences (as a teacher, as a student) figured largely in your development as a writer?
AB: Yes. They taught me to avoid classrooms at all cost.
KR: What advice would you give yourself five years ago?
AB: The same as today. Try not to be afraid.
KR: Of all the things you could be doing, why do you write?
AB: I can’t play the harpsichord.