Review: IRKADURA

Excellent review! A favourite. 🙂

Written by Ay

Irkadura begins with a chilling opening that will destroy you if unprepared. Having read Ksenia Anske’s Rosehead several years ago, I was still impressed by the amount of immersion and experienced as I waded through this flood of a novel, showcasing Anske’s mastery of plot and pacing. Overtime, the story buoys the reader rather than drowning them, like a crocodile playing with it’s meal, with scenes that deftly unfold as we escape with Irina out of the one hell and into another. We read her thoughts and learn her tragedy, balancing our hope Irina isn’t going crazy with the fear of another failure once things look up for our traumatized anti-heroine.  As new characters are introduced, we see the world of butterflies and ravens is more colorful with each inspection. Indeed, we may even dare hope for a happy ending, propelled by the inner strength that Irina, pregnant and only…

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Writer’s Music: Thomas Newman

Jean Lee's World

lemonysnicket_soundtrackNewman’s work throughout this album fulfill several needs for the children’s writer: you have the quirky theme for Olaf (a personal favorite). A quiet, music-box like quality for children. Crazy and proud themes for the different relatives the orphans meet. Newman’s got a delightful uniqueness for every setting the Baudelaire Orphans encounter. I was torn one which track to write about, actually, because Newman’s score has helped me with character development and plot drive. Today, I will focus more on the plot angle.

“The Letter that Never Came” is a beautiful balance between strings and piano. It portrays hope and apprehension all it once—just the mix one experiences when watching doctors move about a child’s sick bed. I write this scene from the human pet’s perspective; she stays close to her troll master while they work, desperate to hear good news of any kind.

When a writer kills a character…

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Eid Reflections

Powerful and interesting piece of writing…

Hajrah L M

Eid Mubarak to all of those celebrating, and those who aren’t! I hope you’ve had a good one. Today, it seems appropriate to reflect on what it means to be Muslim in Britain right now.

I’ve been fortunate to live my life in a multicultural place, thanks to a combination of Birmingham, my parents and my schools. I was raised in a moderate, accepting home with friends of every walk of life. I never questioned my belonging; the idea of being “different” does not cross your mind when you live surrounded by love.

The past few years have forced Muslims to think about these things; I’d like to give a particular shoutout to certain strands of the mainstream media for this. It’s such a horrible question to ask yourself, “Am I wanted?”.

It’s a really strange thing how certain things make you really aware of who you are and how…

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Writer’s Music: Alan Silvestri

Keep going strong dear friend. God bless. 😇

Jean Lee's World

220px-beowulf_coverArt speaks with many tongues: language, imagery, and music. I often find the mix of two helps me create the third: for instance, the scores Ramin Djawadi wrote for Game of Thrones helped me shape the story arc of my Middle Grade fantasy Middler’s Pride. John Carpenter’s eerie synthesized melodies wracked up the tension in my short fiction “The Stray.”I listen to these compositions and stare at a landscape or portraits of those who inspire my characters, and find life moving forward: the characters speak, the land folds itself as a blanket Biff whips and bunches up to become a mountain.

Sometimes, though, a buffer remains: I can see the story, but I see it as an outside observer. Some stories can’t be told with that kind of distance. The narrator must be a character within the tale. Or, at the very least, the narrator must latch onto a character…

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Gallery

Lessons Learned from Neil Gaiman: Some Questions Ought Not Be Answered.

Jean Lee's World

As a child, I spent most of my time with cozy mystery writers like Agatha Christie, P.D. James, Colin Dexter, Ellis Peters, and, of course, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. By saturating myself with mysteries, I grew accustomed to quick character development, red herrings, plot twists, and, of course, explanations. A good mystery must show the whodunnit, howdunnit, and whydunnit. If the mystery isn’t solved, then the protagonist is clearly not worth his weight in pages.

It’s with this mindset, cemented over, oh, a couple of decades, that I entered the fantasy worlds of writers like Diana Wynne Jones and Neil Gaiman via film adaptations of their stories.

While both films take great liberties with the stories, I saw enough to get hooked on these writers for life.

Now I’ve got to admit something shameful: The first time I read Coraline–before motherhood and writing were serious endeavors–I…

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Samiha Zubair: Author of “Reneging Quiescence”

sparkofimaginations

An Interview I conducted for Youth Times, a website I work with, that’s definitely going to inspire you to pursue your dream. All it takes is a leap of faith, we all have that innate spirit and potential that needs to be unleashed. Know more about Samiha Zubair here:

It’s a great honor for Youth Times to interview an emerging Pakistani writer, more particularly a poet. A lot of people would love to hear about your story as a poet and as an author of a book.

Q1.  Tell us about yourself first?

My name is Samiha Zubair. I was born in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. In my early years, I shifted with my family to Pakistan where I completed my education and graduated as a Medical Doctor. For two years, I taught students of O-levels. In writing, I found my second love which I have been pursuing somewhat regularly for…

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Poem: Prisoner of Heartland

Beautifully profound, by a talented friend and emerging writer from Pakistan.

missmalhi

Prisoner Of Heartland

In the dungeon
Of my heart
I have kept you
Imprisoned.

Entangled
In the chains of love,
You cry for freedom;
But I won’t let you
Leave my Kingdom

That dungeon of heart
was visited by no one ever
You don’t realize
O Prisoner
It is not mine
It is solely your Kingdom!

Rameeza Nasim

February 2017

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Antoine de Aviator

Keep going strong dear talented friend!

Written by Ay

That soul of wandering, and regretting
That could not sustain space
With what he loved
So flew over deserts to learn the how
And wrote a boy whose mind was his own
Teaching his adult heart to live
No sadder soul have I ever felt more akin
Lost within the short time that he breathed
Passionate for what he knew was necessary
Even if he perished
(He would end this way)
Accepting
Back to the capsule in which his mind dwelled so long
Coaxed through the heavens
To a little planet in the sky.

-A. Ault-

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