The 30th Doha International Book Fair 2020, which ended yesterday, was a great opportunity for many Qatari female novelists to meet their audience and get in touch with them directly.
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Mariam Ibrahem published her first book, a collection of thoughts called ‘Kan Hilman’ (It was a Dream) in 2016 with great critical acclaim.
With support of her husband, she published her first novel, ‘Satuseiduna Alaqdar Yawmaan’ (One day, our destiny will make us happy), which is about the life of a homeless man in the US. In this novel, she tries to describe the life of homeless people in America and how they suffer on the streets.
“A lot of Qatari people who live in the US said that I have described the reality as it is,” Mariam told The Peninsula. This novel was well-received by her readers, who asked her for more, and inspired her to write a science fiction novel next.
‘Thaman Bila Khatiya’ (Priceless Sin), her latest novel is about inventing a new device that can delete all bad memories and only keep positive one. The book is set in 2025 after the Third World War.
Mariam mentioned that more Qatari people are reading novels than before and this puts more pressure on writing as the readers are looking for more books and better quality.
“Writing is my career. I am a full-time novelist. Doha Book Fair was a nice experience as it gave me an opportunity to get in touch with my fans,” she said.
For Noora Al Naemi, who published her first novel ‘Bashayer’ in 2019, writing is an endless process and she gets inspiration from social phenomena around her. Her novel is based on a real story about a girl named Bashayer, who was bullied through her life. Bashayer is a fake name for a real girl who lives among us.
With support of her family and the Ministry of Culture and Sports, Al Naemi plans to keep writing about other social phenomena to give voice to voiceless people.
“Since there are stories around, I will keep writing,” she told The Peninsula. “It is an amazing experience to write and get famous at this earlier age as I am only 22 years old,” Noora, who is studying at Qatar University, said.
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