Thursday, Sep 24, 2020 | Last Update : 07:36 AM IST

183rd Day Of Lockdown

Maharashtra122438091634833015 Andhra Pradesh6317495518215410 Tamil Nadu5473374919718871 Karnataka5268764233778145 Uttar Pradesh3588932895945135 Delhi2492592133045014 West Bengal2283021989834421 Odisha184122149379763 Telangana1726081419301042 Bihar169856155824870 Assam159320129130578 Kerala13863398720554 Gujarat1247671051913337 Rajasthan116881972841352 Haryana113075908841177 Madhya Pradesh108167836182007 Punjab99930754092860 Chhatisgarh8618347653680 Jharkhand7267358543626 Jammu and Kashmir65026421151024 Uttarakhand4177729000501 Goa2875322726360 Puducherry2319118065467 Tripura2227215441245 Himachal Pradesh124387836125 Chandigarh102987411123 Manipur9010683859 Arunachal Pradesh7385540813 Nagaland5544445110 Meghalaya4733252838 Sikkim2447190529 Mizoram158510120
  Books   06 Jun 2018  Invisible beings made from smokeless fire

Invisible beings made from smokeless fire

THE ASIAN AGE. | KAVI BHANDARI
Published : Jun 6, 2018, 1:22 am IST
Updated : Jun 6, 2018, 1:22 am IST

The author talks about her book, and more.

Shazaf Fatima Haider
 Shazaf Fatima Haider

Shazaf Fatima Haider’s second novel, A Firefly in the Dark, is about a girl named Sharmeen whose life is disrupted when, after a tragedy, she moves into her nani’s  ancestral bungalow with her family. The author talks about her book, and more.

When did the idea for the book germinate?
The idea came in stages. The first stage was a conversation with friend and writer Musharraf Ali Farooqi who is a walking encyclopedia on djinns in Islamic folklore, and whose story, The Jinn Darazgosh is a gem. At the same time, a friend of mine was going through strange experiences that couldn’t be explained rationally — like missing jewellery appearing behind switchboards in the wall! And there is the widow who purports to live with a djinn and routinely invites me to meet him. All this led me to explore the invisible beings made from smokeless fire, and to write about them.

 

Best opening line in a book you have ever read?
I can't remember. You say ‘openings’ and the only thing I can remember is 'Call me Ishmael' from Moby Dick. But that's not the best line, only the one I can remember.

a

A fictional character close to your heart...
Mrs Sharma from  Ratika Kapur’s The private life of Mrs Sharma. She is a woman who is real, flawed and incredibly honest about her shortcomings. I really felt like she was talking to me throughout the novel and her wry sense of humor and desperate boredom struck a deep chord within me.

A writer you would like to have coffee with?
None. Barring very few exceptions, most writers I’ve met are very dull and preoccupied with their own egos. I would much rather have coffee alone.

 

Antidote for writer's block?
I don’t have an antidote. You just have to keep at it despite the dry spells.

A book you keep revisiting time and again?
I used to read Anne of Green Gables all the time. Now I don’t get the time to read that much.

How can aspiring writers prevent rejection from turning into dejection?
Thick skin. Very thick skin.

Tags: a firefly in the dark, shazaf fatima haider