I turn 40 on January 4 of 2018. If you’d like to spoil me, here is a list of things I’d love: This book: This bookcase: https://www.target.com/p/7-shelf-hollow-core-bookcase-homestar/-/A-21536056?lnk=fiatsCookie This bedspread in Queen: https://www.overstock.com/Bedding-Bath/Urban-Habitat-Kids-Bliss-Blue-Cotton-5-piece-Duvet-Cover-Set/16740020/product.html?option=27852748&keywords=clouds%20duvet%20cover&refccid=4GX64BQGAC5JSQKCOWVAX3XVBE&refinement=&searchidx=0 These giant scarab earrings: This print: This rug: A Sephora gift certificate
I’ve been working with wonderful student editors to revamp the Normal School literary magazine’s online presence. I’m very proud of the work we’re doing. Take a look!
My heart is with Gaza.
One of my essays, about a conversation I had with my son, is collected here in this new NYT anthology of Lives essays. You can read more about it here.
Outside the restrooms, each door bore the standard gender symbol denoting male (♂) and female (♀). She stood in front of them and said, “When I come out, I will need you to write something. Please get the notebook,” and disappeared into the women’s room. When she finally emerged, she stood in between the twoContinue reading “New Short Story”
Growing up in Kuwait, we never had Christmas trees, but one year, my mother found a fake one about two feet tall and, although we had nothing to decorate it with, we improvised and posed “underneath” it for pictures. When we moved to the States, my mother began buying fresh trees every December and deckingContinue reading “Have a very Muslim Xmas”
My son on 9/11 was told lies by his white teacher & for years, when flying solo between my home in TX & his father’s in NY, was terrified of Arab terrorists. Now, he knows better. He knows better because he was selected randomly for a screening at the age of seven. He knows betterContinue reading “Twelve years”
This week, I taught my first set of classes– I’m teaching a graphic novels class to graduate students, and an MFA workshop. So far, my students are lovely. I adore them, and I’m excited to read and write and discuss writing with them. The funniest part of being a professor, I think, is the bureaucraticContinue reading “Back to School”
When I was just shy of being 14, I moved from Egypt to Westchester with my family. A year later, we moved to CT. These moves were traumatizing, because, in addition to being a weird-looking teenager with frizzed out hair and acne, I was also new to America, and trying to navigate high school andContinue reading “Pen World Voices Fest”
Today I am feeling nostalgic for my Texas years. Being a broke single mama wasn’t always fun, but goddamn, I read a lot and wrote a lot and danced a lot and drank a lot and loved a lot and tried very hard. It’s not that I don’t do those things now, but that IContinue reading “Nostalgia”