Do you believe that each of us has a unique gift to share with the world? I do. I look at my children now and am aware of the responsibility to introduce them to new experiences and knowledge so they can uncover their passions and begin to understand who they are at their core.  Recently […]

I am sad. There I said it. I don’t like to be the sad one. Not that there’s anything wrong with being sad: we all feel like this sometimes, and some more than others. In fact, I’d argue that if you don’t feel sad sometimes then your skin is probably too thick, and you might […]

I’m nearing the end of the first draft of Hidden Colours, my second novel, scheduled to be released in late autumn. The novel is set in modern day Berlin. My husband is from Berlin and we studied there together, and sometimes we dream about living there again, but that’s a story for another day. I’ve […]

This post was originally published in Open Thought Vortex magazine, a wonderful place for discovering new writing. Traditions can be the smallest things. The Spanish wearing red underwear at Christmas. A football team supported by generations of a family. Your grandmother’s curry recipe. Strawberries and cream at Wimbledon. Bonfires on Guy Fawkes Night. Carving pumpkins. […]

There is something seductive about crossing the threshold into a new year. It’s the same feeling as opening a new journal, or writing on crisp letter paper, or sliding under clean bedsheets. A fresh start holds promise. It’s like a new relationship: full of romance and possibility. Humans like symbolism. And yet, I am different. […]

I’ll tell you how I’m feeling today, if you tell me too. Not for us, the false niceties papering over our humanness. Not for us, the filters to smooth out our skin on social media, to give the grey pallor of our faces a sunlight hue. I’m tired and overwhelmed, and I know it will […]

The baby didn’t sleep last night. His need for me is wearing. I stand in the hallway, exhausted, listening to him whimper in his cot after I place him there. I cup my hands in prayer. The shape they make is at first alien, a relic from childhood rituals when our family attended the mosque […]

I’ve not been here for a while. The juggling of balls has been hard this summer, and there has not been enough pieces of me to share around. The baby is eight months now, and I’ve been ready for months to smooth out a white page, to fill it with words until every corner is […]

I’ve dreamt about this moment for so long, willed it to happen, worked hard for it, and now it is here, I’m spinning with excitement and fear. My first novel, All the Tomorrows, is due to be released in less than three months on 6 November 2017. Three months of happy dances, but also nail-biting, […]

Some days it seems as though my mobile phone has become an extension of my body: another limb or brain. Or a succubus. Why is it that we long to reach certain goal posts as children, ones which as adults are no longer enticing? Children as young as ten clamour for their own phones. What […]

I know it’s not always the best idea to be political on blogs. Why alienate your readership? Even so, I’m going to break that rule. That’s because today, I found politics not to be divisive, but to be hopeful. Today, I went canvassing. Our older two children stayed with my husband. It was me and […]

We went to the beach at East Wittering, a few hours drive away. The sea air was bracing, the sand between my toes cool. Beach huts in primary colours and bold patterns stood against the grey sky. The baby fussed, and I was secretly pleased to leave our frisbee-playing big kids in their father’s care […]

Spring is here Here in London, spring is finally in the air. The daffodils are in full bloom. In some ways it feels like I am coming out of hibernation. The youngest member of our brood is now three months old, and during the dark and dreary winter months we’ve been cocooned inside with the […]

There are some things that just make me happy, like sitting in a park and watching aeroplanes flying through a blanket of clouds. Certain music tracks. What a joy it is to plug in some earphones and cancel out all the noise apart from what you are choosing to listen to. A glass of water […]

When I was small, my parents used to worry I was too idealistic, a prime target for people to take advantage of. It made them protective, and less trusting of any reaches for independence. Even today, when the years have mellowed my idealism, I don’t see idealism as something that skews perspective, that is somehow […]

I try to keep politics off this blog. That’s the common advice, isn’t it? Not to alienate potential readers by being overtly political. It’s like bringing politics up at dinner parties or with family. There’s something unsavoury about it. Rarely does consensus come out of political conversations unless you are talking to like-minded people. But […]

I’ve not posted here for a while. I had lost my way. Sometimes the only thing to do is to retreat into your shell, hide away, let the storms of fear and despair pass. Maybe I’m still lost, but it helps to turn up to a blank page, to coax the swirl of words inside […]

My stomach swells from beneath the swirl of bathwater I sink until every inch of me is pressed to the white enamel internalising hearing the drum of my heartbeat eyelids closed, imagining multiplying cells and spirit the newly forming life inside the walls of my red womb I already love you more than myself, this […]

Yesterday was Mother’s Day for many people. While in the UK it is celebrated in March, such is the reach of Facebook, that I twitched at the thought my mum might think I had forgotten to make a fuss of her. I’m ambivalent about commercial days like Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and Valentine’s Day. Even […]

I’m Muslim, did you know? You might have guessed, from how I look I suppose. I once was interviewed by a woman, who after I got the job, confided in me that she could almost always tell someone’s religion after speaking to them for five minutes. I wonder if she could tell also that I’d […]