Swimming to Palestine

Rummaging through a wonderful cardboard box full of family memorabilia, I came across a series of letters my grandmother wrote in researching for her brother David Diamond‘s biography, which she never wrote.  I would love to reconstruct what she might have written.  I have a box full of material related to Uncle David and my grandmother. My book contains a […]

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Putting it all together

Hooray! I have at last returned to The Straight Path, my blog on the Houston Chronicle’s website. On April 24, 2013 I wrote a post titled “Coming out of hiding” in which I wrote: I guess it’s a good time news-wise to talk about being an American Muslim, so I might as well start now.  Stay tuned! But I didn’t. […]

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The end is in sight

I finally got (or finally understood, or a combination of both) the schedule of key dates for my fourth, last, final and ultimate semester at Goucher. What it boils down to is that I have a couple months to write like a madwoman and God willing on August 2 I will be a proud Gopher walking in commencement.  Hopefully I’ll […]

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A book and a memoir

I’m two months into my last semester at Goucher! My mentor for this semester is Phillip Gerard and I think he’s going to provide the guidance I need to get this manuscript done. He’s using – and so I’ve started using – two words I’ve resisted since I first applied to Goucher. I never intended to write a BOOK and I definitely never planned to write a MEMOIR. I resisted the thought of writing a book because I wanted to just write individual long-form pieces, then I got a job, then I was writing essays, and now Phillip is calling it a book and guiding me to put the separate pieces together so they actually tell a story. And the story turns out to be about me, my experiences, my thoughts, around being Muslim, about Islam in America, and about just stuff whether it’s thematic or not. And so it is a memoir. I used to mock memoirists because it seemed self-absorbed to write about oneself and because I thought of memoirs as diaries. I guess I can laugh at myself now. Or I can get busy and finish this MEMOIR.

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Format, part 2: The overthinking

In last night’s post I promised to continue my train of thought.  Yesterday was kind of a thoughtful day, as in I wrote for like an hour in my journal, vented some anger, bitterness, resentment, confusion and a little bit about goal-setting.  This is why I keep a journal – a password-protected, naming-names corner of my personal galaxy.  Often after […]

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