Today at Rukia Publishing, Sarah Jane talks to Mehreen Ahmed about her stream of consciousness book, Moirae
Moirae by Mehreen Ahmed
Embedded in dream allegory, Moirae conveys human predicament taken from a fantasy land called the Lost Winds. Juxtaposed with the narrator's intermittent views, imaginary events are captured and presented allegorically in the main character's lucid dreams. These dramas appear in knitting of pink honeycomb patterns. As the knitting continues, each of these bee-hives self-organizes purportedly into a new word.
Queensland writer, Mehreen Ahmed has been publishing since 1987. Her first publications were journalistic in nature which appeared in the Sheaf, a campus newspaper for the university of Saskatchewan Canada. Later on she published fiction and academic non-fiction. Jacaranda Blues is her debut novella. A featured author for Story Institute, she has published The Blotted and Line,a collection of short stories. More recently, Snapshots, a book of travels was published by PostScript Editions followed by a dream allegory written in stream of consciousness style called Moirae.
Welcome to Rukia Publishing Mehreen and thank you for taking part our featured author blog.
What was the inspiration for writing Moirae?
Moirae was inspired by a bunch of mentally ill people persecuted by their neighbors in their village. Talking to them made me interested in their lives and thoughts which I later created in producing Moirae.
Who is the target audience for this book?
This is a hard going read. So any one patient and understanding enough to read it through would be the target audience. I don't expect to attract a wide audience for this book at all.
How long did it take you to write this book?
About a year.
What is the biggest source of writing inspiration in your writing life?
I believe in contribution. Something that I have written will be left behind when I am gone. This has led me to live a life of the mind and that is the source of my inspiration.
Is there one book or author that has inspired you more than any other?
Yes, Virginia Woolf.
What is your favorite line or quote from your book?
These are stream of consciousness (SOC) sentences separated not by period but by uppercase letters. SOC is not new, but my presentation is original.
"Mother I had a beautiful house in Shingdi a vegetable garden Vines of bitter gourd lettuce English spinach and tousled coconut trees Coconuts fell on my darling husbands head One day we made love under the tree Now I was pregnant just like my orchard full of fruits with the love child Oh I ran as hard as I could from the shadow These were shadows of time shadows of the past ..."
Do you have a favorite time of day for writing and why?
Rain inspires me to write. When the cloud darkens and the winds howl, that's when I know that it's time to write. Otherwise, quiet evenings are my favorite time of the day.
What are you currently reading and why did you choose it?
I am reading The Silent House by Orhan Pamuk. My husband who is an intellectual and an academic recommended this book to me, given my interest in the Turkish culture. We had very good Turkish friends once. I don't know where they are now.
Who is the biggest source of writing in your writing life?
There isn't just one or two people but many. Authors of great books, novels and dramatists of all ages have inspired me over many years.
Do you take time off when you finish a book or do you start the next project straight away?
It depends. Sometimes more than one plot will be hovering simultaneously in my mind. When this happens, I usually send the first draft to the publisher and while that's being processed, I shall start another almost straight away.
Do you have a current writing project that you would like to share with us?
Yes, I'm writing a novel called, Until the Evensong. It is about an Australian maverick, whose diabolic nature comes from an external source quite beyond comprehension.
If you had one thing to share with your readers that you would like readers to know what would that be?
That one should create a parallel world of one's choosing. A world of art, literature and music where one could retire momentarily from time to time.
Thank you so much for joining us Mehreen, I am currently reading Moirae for our Rukia the Reader review and as this is the first stream of consciousness book I have read I am enjoying experiencing a new writing craft.
Visit Mehreen's Amazon Author page here
Buy your copy of Moirae here
Find Moirae on Goodreads:
Here is a review of Moirae by Tony McMahon university of RMIT Australia.
Mehreen Ahmed is a wildly interesting writer. Moirae is not the first book from the Queensland scribe that I’ve read, but it is undoubtedly the best, most mature work. This is a nebulous yet - paradoxically perhaps – razor sharp text that speaks to the reader on a number of intellectual levels. Ahmed somehow manages to blend stream of consciousness type prose with a sure knack for story telling, and the results are no less than delightful. If you think about it, this kind of mixture is one that few writers have the ability – or the audacity – to attempt. Joyce is one exception that springs to mind, but he is probably an exception that only proves the rule. Jack Kerouac maybe. Either way, with this work, it is obvious that Ahmed joins a very select group indeed. Thoroughly recommended for both its technical beauty and, not inconsiderably, its bravery.