bjarte-alvestadOne dark wintry night in Neukölln, Paula Varjack ventured into an artist run space curiously named the “Altes Finanzamt” . It was there she would have the the great pleasure, in stumbling across a striking trio of writers from Norway, Northern Ireland and Ireland: Bjarte Alvestad, Alan Cunningham and John Holten. On this week’s episode of Now Hear This, we draw you in to their worlds of words, alongside the easy banter that can only come from very good friends.

Expect a lively discourse on everything from sex to death, dada to desire and perhaps even ponderings on bluebells in winter. Please note: this literary conversation may well have a more than a little red wine between the lines.
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Bjarte Alvestad, born 1979 in Oslo, Norway is a poet and some
times photographer. He writes mostly about love, the universe, detachment and war. So naturally most of his photos are aestethic renditions of sunshine and flowers. He has done photo exhibitions in Oslo, Copenhagen and Hamburg, but has yet to be discovered in the city he currently resides in, Berlin. Here he has been working mainly as a journalist and researcher within photography related subjects, and was last published with an article about Sao Paulo for Statoil’s art programme.

He likes nature and anti-nature, and staying up late discussing the difference between the two in expensive bars. He has written quite a few poems, published in some online poetry magazines and Norwegian newspapers, and is currently working on a collection of short stories

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Alan Cunningham is an Irish writer living in Berlin. He is currently finishing the third (At The Foot of The Crossing) in a series of three, very loosely connected novels, after which time he will endeavour to get published and continue the work he has started on something very new and different and….all that…called Count from Zero to One Hundred.

Read his writing, fictional and otherwise, at

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John Holten, born 1984 in Ireland, studied in Dublin and Paris. Since then he has published fiction and poetry in a number of journals and magazines, the most recent of which appeared in Blind Mirrors, edited by Thierry Decottignies (Sep 2010 AADK Press) In 2009 he co-established Broken Dimanche Press as a vehicle for trans-national book projects, for which he also edits the journal Kakofonie. In 2010 You Are Here, the anthology he co-edited and published with BDP represented Ireland in the Charlemagne European Youth Prize and came second place out of 27 countries. He has worked as an editor and translator for a number of projects and institutions across Europe. His first novel The Readymades is due for publication in 2011.