Writing To Discovery


The feedback I’ve gotten from my previous instructors is that I need to “step into” my pieces more deeply. With my mentor I want to learn how to set up great scenes but also ones that carry a depth of meaning.

I get asked all the time what it’s like to wear the Niqab (face veil) and why I started. It’s a long-winded answer and I’m never quite satisfied with my response. Sometimes I tell myself I don’t need to answer the questions facing me about the veil…even though I’m fully aware of its foreignness in our society. And other times I am the one reflecting on my decision and what it means to me. I started this book as a quest for self-discovery and for it to serve as a personal reminder when my uncertainties creep in. I want to remember why I began and the ways the veil has shaped my life since. Hopefully by talking (or rather writing) myself through my journey other readers can gain a perspective of the life of a Muslim woman they’ve never had before.

My writing process being with me coming up with a prompt and all the things I want to talk about in that prompt. Then I write it and throughout the process I refer back to the prompt details to see if I’ve spoken about each. I find that writing about my experiences to be both painful and liberating. I don’t think the actual experiences are painful to relive but squeezing them out with close accuracy is the hard part. I think the feeling of relief at the end is worth it.

If I could choose one author to write a book about my life it would be Na’ima B. Roberts. She’s a writer and poet from the UK that I admire. Although she’s not well known to Canadian readers her writing reminds me of Thomas King and his subtle yet powerful voice. She’s Thomas King with the perspective of a Muslim woman.

If I ruled the world, I would make it so that writers would never work. They would never have to do anything except working on their craft and learning about the world. I would give writers a monthly allowance of $6,000 and their only mandate would be to stay focused and work on producing quality literature.

10 years from now I hope to have published 3-4 pieces of literature. I want to get a masters in Islamic civilization and bring the exciting period of 6th century to the 20th century into writing.