Sunday, August 27, 2006

Making It Count

Not a great deal to report I'm afraid. The dates for the book tour have been locked in so you can now plan ahead to which ones you'd like to attend... my recommendation? All of them!

Moments is in for a review at the GDN, so hopefully one will be printed in time with the launch of the book. Fingers crossed it'll be a positive one. Speaking of the GDN my second column was printed last week. And I've created a new blog/site in which you can find my weekly column Culturally Speaking, appearing one or two weeks after publication.

And speaking of sites, I've done a few new extra touches to my main website with a couple of new downloads and tidbits. And speaking of , er, newness... more thna 550 words have been written on chapter 20 of my next/second novel Buried (working title). Still feels a long way to go.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Book On Tour

Check out the confirmed dates so far for the Moments Book Tour!

The book launch will now be held on September 14th at the Al Bareh Art Gallery. The owner of the gallery was a wonderful lady and showed enthusiasm and interest in my book and willingness to host the event. So I'm looking forward to it.

Other dates are slotted over the followed couple of weeks including book signings and readings. More on that soon. There should be a press released with full details within the next few days. Stay tuned.

I had a very pleasant interview with Rochelle at the Bahrain Traveler magazine the other day and it went very well. I think it was one of the best I've had yet. The interview will be published in September's issue.

Two to three other magazines are going to run interviews/features in their next issues as well. And I'm told Khaleej Times ran a piece in today's paper but I couldn't find it online!

Couple of meetings tomorrow. Including another magazine interview and an event related meeting. I should also stop by the publisher to check things over, and get a few galley copies printed for review purposes. A number of people/publications have expressed interest in writing a review on Moments.

It seems time is catching up with me and I'll need to quicken my pace. Still lots to go over before the launch.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

In Which I Can't Bother To Come Up with a Proper Title

From the August issue of the CO-EDS magazine – which is now a monthly publication – I will be starting a 'book review section' in which you will find a few books reviews, recommendations, and other literature related articles.

Pick this month's issue to read what I have to say about Paulo Coleho's 'The Alchemist', to check out the top 5 summer/beach/sea related novels and 4 book reviews. There is also an interesting article about the 'Five Simple Ways To Improve Your English'!

Things are starting to materialize and a schedule of events and functions is beginning to take shape. Expect a busy couple of weeks follow the launch date of Moments. Not that things aren't busy now! I've been meeting people and making calls and trying to pull together a marketing, distribution and media campaigns all at once!

Not to mention that I have to keep a close tap on the publisher peeps. The book won't be ready until the first week of September so I have to make sure there are no glitches whatsoever.

And as if that's not enough, worldwide distribution isn't looking that simple to sort out. A couple of options are on the table, one of them will have to materialize.

More soon…

Monday, August 14, 2006

You Can't Miss It

Now At Booksplus, Seef
Originally uploaded by Ali Al Saeed.
Models of Success; The Journey is now available for sale at Booksplus in Seef Mall. The book is displayed on the shops front window. You can't miss it! Go on, show your support by purchasing a copy. Great gift for young adults this one.

I'm going to focus over the coming days on finalizing the details for any upcoming events for promoting Moments. Like I previously mentioned there will probably include a launch event, book signing, reading and talk. A number of venues have expressed their interest in hosting such events; it's just a matter of agreeing on a date and time.

Proofing Moments has been completed.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Read It First

Be the first to read the short story Goodbye, Humanity published in Issue 4 of Capture Weekly. Click on this link to download the issue in PDF or visit the Capture Weekly website. Goodbye, Humanity will be featured in the upcoming collection Moments, and was recorded for the audio book edition as well. I hope it will give you a taste of things to come.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Culturally Speaking

… is my new weekly column published every Thursday on the Gulf Daily News.

Culturally Speaking will be Bahrain's very own culture vulture, an insight look into the world of art and literature through the eyes of a Bahraini author. No subject known to the publishing industry or the arts scene will be sacred!

Read the very first column appearing in today's GDN.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Source of Openness

Last week I was interviewed by Radio Open Source for their latest online radio show with the topic 'Generational Divide in the Middle East'. You can now listen to that interview here.

I must admit, I stuttered and stumbled a bit. You know, still get nervous sometimes. I remember the interview lasted a good part of at least half an hour! The clip is only 1 min 40 sec long.

So a lot of what I said didn't make the cut. But I think one of the things I did want to say was that there's this unspoken rule that, as the younger generation, we must listen and respect our elders. In the sense that they do most of the talking, and we either agree with what they say, or simply acknowledge it. And it's not that we don't have things to say, or are afraid to say it, it's simply the way we were brought up, out of culture and tradition.

The unfortunate truth is that the 'senior' generation has always found it difficult to put their faith in their 'junior' one, always struggled in accepting their impending role in taking this on, in showing responsibility. In some cases it's true, and the young ones usually end up disappointing you, but it gets to the point where you have to let go. You don't have to die before handing over command to those under you.

So we end up being made to feel belittled, marginalized and insignificant, and we, eventually, would snap. Years and years of oppression and repression can result in only one thing.

Another aspect I've been noticing these past few weeks is how my parents has been perceiving what's been going on with the war on Lebanon. I could feel that, watching the news unfold, it's taken them back to the 1960s era, to the day of Gamal Abdulnaser, to the long-gone days of Arab unity and patriotism.

They say history repeats itself, in one form or the other. I can see that in their eyes.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

The Good, The Bad & The OK!

Hits to my official website shot through the roof over the past few days! Thanks to the mention I got on Neil Gaiman's journal, the number of daily visitors quadrupled over the first few days of August.

Just goes to show really.

Make sure you visit the website to check out the latest updates and features. I know I've said this before, but I will do my best to update it regularly whenever I can. I've installed a new programme which will make life easier for me now.

The bad news…

Well not as bad as you might think, just a little disappointing (for me at least). The launch of Moments has been delayed for a few days. It's been pushed back to the 14th after the publisher felt the need for some more time to produce the book. We want to make sure that we have something pretty good at the end of the day.

But I'll leave you on a high note. The past couple of nights I wrote no less than FOUR minutes of script on Hold. This is going to be, I figure, a 90+ minute screenplay. I've written to date a total of 18.

The story involves a 'pregnant' Arab woman at the centre of a bomb threat, inside a major government building, that turns out to be more than just another terrorist attack.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

In Which Gaiman Replies

Capture Weekly will be publishing Goodbye Humanity in their fourth issue which will be released next Wednesday (Aug 9). The publication is released, for now, in digital format only, and features new 'high quality fiction for free' every week.

Oh and Neil Gaiman finally answered one of my emails on his blog! Wohoo! On the third attempt, my questions went through and the reply was posted on his journal a couple of days ago (dates July 31, scroll down to see it). Ah, now I feel all special.

And finally… is there a Monster in your closet?

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Making It Real

Hashim and I will be busy over the coming days producing a limited run of the Moments audio book. These will be available in time with the publication and launch of the printed collection.

All files are now with the publisher and I'm told that work is underway on converting them and installing them into the printing system. This, apparently, will take a few days. I will keep you posted on the developments as they happen.

With QuixotiQ, all I had to do was send stuff to iUniverse and they got back to me with a draft to approve. My experience so far with Al Maseerah is a lot more hands-on, so I'm learning more and more as I go along. It's fascinating to say the least.

It seems that the month of September will be packed with all manner of things, a number of events are being planned for, to promote, mainly Moments, but also Models of Success: The Journey, which is now on sale at Booksplus (Seef) for BD8 only. So go down there and get your copy… go on!