The hustle, the intestines and December

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Salut!

Ça va? Here in Calgary, the weather is divine. Not everyone likes the constantly changing mountain weather, but I love me some changing skies (at least in the summer, lol).

I’ve learned to appreciate Canadian weather and environment after extensive traveling in South Asia (and a brief stint in East Asia). After spending time in places with clogged, dusty air, the minty Canadian breeze feels like heaven on earth (though we’ve got our share of smog days in places like Windsor lol).

I’ve satiated my travel craze for the next ten years, but it’s left me with an intestinal affliction that might not heal for months. Physiologically, this is the worst time for me to get hit: I’m immunocompromised and I can’t take most drugs right now. So all I can do is hope my body fights this off on its own. So far, it isn’t doing too bad. Go immune system, go!

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And although it’s the worst time physically, it’s the best time in every other way for me to be the most cripplingly sick I’ll probably ever be. I live with my parents (hi mom) and don’t have to worry about the roof over my head. I can pass out whenever the lack of energy gets too real, or remain catatonically curled up in bed when the worst of the nausea strikes (lemons and ginger people, lemons and ginger).

Despite everything, I’ve set AYAME’s completion date for December, six months from now. There’ll be major distractions along the way, but if I hustle hard, the final version of the manuscript will be complete by then.

I’m limited in my ability to network and spread the word about AYAME, especially at such an early stage, but I know things will pick up. We need stories like AYAME. South Asian girls need more representation in literature. It’s about time we got something more than a high school girl dealing with an identity crisis. It’s about time we got over the fact that a character is Muslim (and it’s about time we got some unapologetically religious characters, too). Let’s push the barriers in more creative genres. I want FEMALE action heroes of colour. I want confident, powerful protagonists that AREN’T scantily clad in sexualized costumes. I want characters who aren’t embarrassed of their differences. I want the narrative to change.

UPDATE (Oct. 5th, 2017): I am so not working on AYAME right now; it’s been put on the back-burner as I deal with some other things. I left this post up however so y’all can see the process a writer goes through when trying to set and meet deadlines.

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