Today we're chatting with a fabulous author whose debut novel will be released next year. How exciting! Let's welcome Medeia Sharif.
Hi, Medeia. Great to have you here. Tell us a bit about yourself.
It's great that you didn't give up. Let's hear about BESTEST. RAMADAN. EVER. Wow, what a title! What’s your story about?
Almira Abdul, a Middle Eastern mutt of Syrian and Iranian origins, is fifteen going on sixteen and she’s fasting for Ramadan for the first time ever. Coinciding with the holy month is her first major crush with a boy named Peter, whom her best friend Lisa also is in love with. She also has a new enemy at school, catty Shakira Malik, a fellow Muslim who trades barbs with everyone. Her dentist father also proclaims that she needs braces. Along with the hectic month her grandfather, who knocks down mailboxes and garbage cans when parking, is teaching her how to drive in his tank-like car.
Sounds original and intriguing. How did the idea of the story come to you?
It's always motivating for aspiring writers to be reminded that even published authors had once had to deal with rejections during the querying process. What tips can you give those of us still querying?
I went through plenty of rejection. In the 90’s I collected mounds of rejection letters and after the millennium my inbox was full of e-jects.
Excellent tip! What’s the hardest part of writing for you?
Editing. It’s hard on my eyes to read the same project over and over again for mistakes. I’m getting better at putting away a manuscript for longer periods of time. It helps to look at it again with fresh eyes.
I agree. Let’s get to know you on a deeper level. What do you absolutely have to have nearby when writing?
My Blackberry, a bottle of water, my planner, and lip balm.
As the roller coaster spun upside down, the girl’s bandages fell off and an amphibian flew into her mouth.
Ahahaha, whoops! Here’s the part where you thank the people who are supporting you. Who would you like to give a shout out to?
I’d like to thank my agent Marlene Stringer and my Flux editor Brian Farrey. I’m sure that there will be more people to thank from now until my 2011 debut as different players come into the picture.
And finally, where can people find you online?
My website is http://www.sharifwrites.com and my blog is http://www.medeiasharif.com.
Thanks so much for taking the time to chat with us, Medeia. And I look forward to the release of your debut novel.