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Havel wants to stage a literary comeback

Former Czech President Vaclav Havel wants to return to the literary career that made him famous.

He just wishes he had more time to write, an aide said Monday.

The former dissident writer ended his literary career in 1989 when he was named president of then-Czechoslovakia.

Havel, whose last term as president ended in February, said in an interview published Friday that he'd like to write a new play. He told the Vecernik Praha daily the play would be "based on 'King Lear,' above all on a story of a man who is so entangled in power that he collapses at the moment he loses it."

Havel dismissed suggestions that such a play could be based on politics he observed during his time as president.

"I had been working on this theme at a time when I could never even imagine that one day I would become president," the 66-year-old was quoted as saying.

Those expecting new Havel works soon will be disappointed, said his aide, Jaroslava Dutkova.

"Vaclav Havel would be happy to write again right now, but he doesn't have time," she said. "He's been looking for it all the time but so far with no luck."

In July, Havel traveled to Washington to receive the Medal of Freedom, the United States' highest civilian honor, which President Bush gave him.

He's a Czech goodwill ambassador and a member of a new human rights committee set up to oppose Fidel Castro's rule in Cuba. Together with his wife, Dagmar, he runs a charity foundation. He also has battled lung cancer.