“Don’t ruin your work just to get false applauds just be a master in your field and own your art”.

Samina is an author of “obsessed with the dawns”. You are welcome.
Thank you so much!

Q:Tell us about yourself?
A: Well, I am Samina Mushtaq khan, hailing from downtown area of Srinagar. I have been brought up in a middle class family. Although coming from a conservative society, I never gave up on my dreams. I am a library Science Graduate and have been fond of books but literally never read much. Library, for me is a place of solace and would recommend every confusing soul to visit one, as it has been said, ‘if in chaos visit the library, you will definitely come up with the answer/solution to your problems. Currently I am working in banking sector and to be honest, sometimes it becomes so hard to meet both ends. I belong to the place known as paradise on the universe- ‘The Kashmir’. This place has beauty spreading all over, and it mesmerizes the eyes that see it. So, for me, this place has something, a spark, I can say which keeps me on pushing to write more and more. The dusk and dawns are so soothing to the eyes that nobody can resist to pen down about his/her emotions. I would say I am an open book anyone can read but to understand you need to dive in those words of mine, which for me are twining galaxies.

Q:How you started your journey as a writer?
A:For me, poetry is an emotion that you can express on a paper. Well! I won’t say I had been writing since from ages, but yes I used to write when I was a student of primary department, and reading my own words made me laugh at that time and I used to tear those pages apart. Then after graduating from university I was having lot of leisure to invest and start compiling some manuscripts and again discard it off as I was scared people will laugh or start mocking.
Then it was from 2014 onwards I started writing with desperation and in return words started healing me. I started making friends with paper and pen and in these two alleys of mine I found my escape. I had never craving of being recognized, all I want is to transform my apathy and emotions in words that could resonate with each and every broken soul, and could heal one up somehow.  For me, writing a poem is a soul soother a balm that relaxes the scars of my heart.

Q:What was your parent’s reaction when they got to know about your writings?
A: As I already said, I never showed my excerpts and write ups to anyone while I used to tear them off. But ever since I started writing after a tragic episode, a tyranny that engulfed our happening lives, I used to show them my words and they somehow felt connected and literally cried once. They boosted me to write more and yes I used to get ushered with thoughts, I don’t know the source actually. My parents started believing on what I was writing and they encouraged me. It’s because of their blessings that I am here, able to connect to the world, oozing my emotions out, making my voice audible, standing infront of the crowd, able to get my voice heard else left unsaid. 

Q:Why do you write?
A:I write to find an escape. I don’t have friends to share feelings with. Besides I believe people never notice about your well-being. You often find yourself getting overheard. So for me writing is a place where I find tranquility. It’s a place of magical bliss, an eternity where longing is cut short and emotions dance to the tune of my pen. Where paper never complaint of my irony and always pays a compassionate ear. I write to rest my heart in a peaceful slumber.

Q:Any difference you feel in yourself because of writing?
A:Yes, ofcourse, if you are a writer then you see yourself growing and grooming with each passing day. Your own thoughts make you above all from everyone. A sense of maturity starts evolving in you.You start connecting yourself with eternal bliss. No doubt, most of the writes are considered insane, and somehow they believe they have crossed the line of insanity, but believe me that zone is a blessing in itself.

Q:You have written a book; titled as “obsessed with the dawns” Whatis itall about?
A:Yes. This book is having my heart. When I thought of publishing it, I was not sure whether it will be accepted by the people over there or not, but thanks to Almighty, it was admired by each and every reader of mine. My book got a good response from the audience and was accepted at every platform wherever I walked after getting published. Well! Talking about my book it’s about eternity,divine, love, longing, feminism and many more different themes. It’s basically a kind of anthology and I am feeling blessed that my readers started connected to my words somehow. As main theme of my book is pain so I believe people are more connected to the pain rather than anything else.My poetic work holds a belief that the beauty of a sunrise can be cherished only after a dark spell.

Q:Are you working on something new as of now?
A:Basically, the society we are living in is more oriented towards writing rather than reading, so at some point I thought of giving up on my writing interest but then my close alleys compelled and convinced me to write and continue with my passion because they know it well what writing out my emotions meant for me. Coming back to your question, yes I am on a new project right now and that will soon hit the markets and I hope people will like it in the same way as they pampered my first book ‘Obsessed with the dawns’.
Besides I am thinking of writing a novel soon, but that’s not on board yet. I seek blessings from my honest readers and reviewers.

Q:How you tackle with negative responses from readers. And tell us how was all over response of your book from audience?
A:Well, for me, positive criticism is must for an artist to groom up and it helps him to make his work better. But to be honest I  didn’t received negative responses, maybe my readers are a family or my supporters or else maybe they too find my words a heeler for themselves. My book received a good acclaim from all sects of the society and was ushered with so much of love. I am really thankful to each and every one of them who made my work recognized. I keep on saying I am because of my family and I consider my readers, my family. All critical acclaims that tend to modify and groom me up and my work is much appreciated by me and will be highly considered and respected.

Q:How reading enhances our writing skills?
A:That is a great question to be answered, well, I believe reading broaden up your horizons adds up spices to your thoughts and your imaginations are enlightened with different visions and themes. So to be a good writer, you need to be a good reader too. I would suggest inculcating reading habit in every literate one and to make sure to spent half hour from your busy schedule towards the books. You will see them guiding you to the path of light. 

Q:What would be your message to aspiring writers?
A: I don’t know whether I am at that place where I can suggest and advice artists to do this and that, but yes I would like to share my views on this matter. I would like to advice all the writers to start reading before opting for writing, I won’t say it’s bad to write or shun it as such, but to make yourself a better writer who could be remembered for decades and whose work will add laurels to the literary field. I would like to advise them to be consistent with your work and try to be honest without faking it out. Don’t ruin your work just to get false applauds just be a master in your field and own your art. 

Thank you so much for your precious time. We wish you success!
Pleased to be here! Thank you so much!

MALIK SUHAIL GULAL- An Interviewer is a budding Writer, columnist and poet who is Pursuing Honours in Political Science at CUS. He can be reached at maliksuhailgulal132@gmail.com.