My year (and decade) in books

Dear friends,

The year is almost over. Just like that. While I’ve always tried to remain indifferent to making year-end lists, I also realised that this is the end of a decade. And the pressure to recount it has been mounting, even as I try to ignore it, everywhere around me.

It’s been a strange decade for me. An entire ten years where I realised my potential as a writer and started writing books faster than publishers could publish them. From Kite Strings, my very first novel, to the latest one published on Amazon, my writing has evolved and changed phenomenally.

What were we doing at the beginning of 2010, though? I think we began it with a lot of hope and belief in the best the world could offer. I remember being unsure about what life held for me as a writer. I had just managed to get Kite Strings published after several years of trying and several more rejections. The response was heartening but certainly not life-changing.

I remember the struggle, the hard work, the sheer back breaking hard work that I’ve given to my writing. There were several highs and lows in this decade but things have begun to change since 2018. I managed to get 5 books published in 2018, and all of them were trade-published, with traditional publishers.

This year, in 2019, I had just one book out with a traditional publisher -A Sweet Deal - but this is also the year I discovered self-publishing. It opened up so many avenues for me, and I will always be grateful to my friends in the indie publishing world who showed me the ropes and helpfully answered my questions and encouraged me. For those who are not aware, I published 5 books on Amazon this year - My Sister’s Wedding, a trilogy - Jasmine Villa Series - One Way to Love, Loving you Twice and Three Times Lucky and lastly, the first of a new series - It Was Always You.

This year has also been marked with personal loss - my bade baba passed away in February and I still can’t believe it sometimes. He was proud of me and whatever I had accomplished.

I also feel a little stupid, writing this while the world around us is crumbling. We had no idea, did we, when the decade began that we would one day have to scrabble around to prove that we belonged to this country? I remember distinctly, the moment I stepped off the plane when we returned from doing Hajj in 2012. I remember that moment, and that day, 1st November, almost too perfectly. It was raining lightly and the air was cool and chilly and the moment I touched my foot on the soil of my country made me want to cry because I was back home.

I have no idea what the next decade will bring.

I do know that InshaAllah, I will continue writing.

That’s it from me for now. I hope to be plugged in to my laptop, writing at least a chapter in my new book while the world brings in the new year. Stay safe, everyone. Let’s hope that hope doesn’t get crushed in the coming years. Hope is all we have left.