It’s weird what happens when you start getting successful.

Within the Muslim community I’ve had lots of people come up to me and tell me how they want to get published.

I’ve had a relative blatantly ask me for one of my editor’s names and phone number because his daughter had written something ‘brilliant’ and he wanted her to get published too.

I’ve had people, again blatantly, ask for my agent’s name and phone number.

And for the most part these are people who have no real love of literature.

I think they just assume, “Hey she did it. So can I.” And so instead of supporting me as a Muslim author and storyteller, they decide they want to throw their hat in the ring.

Well, all power to them.

One thing I realized a long time ago is that we need more Muslim authors! And competition is healthy. It keeps you on your toes. It pushes you to write better because hey, you’re not the only fish in the sea!

Back in November when I went to the NCTE convention I was interviewed by an organization that promotes literacy called Colorin Colorado.

Do enough videos and a funny thing happens, you actually start getting comfortable in front of the camera.

Here’s the link to see the interviews. They edited them so well so that they’re like playlists of shorter pieces!

And it really feels like they’re starting to notice me. Like I’m an entity within my own right.

And then on last Sunday, I spent the day at Sakinah TV, a fledgling Muslim satellite TV station, telling folktales and stories. When I have links I’ll post them insha Allah.

They want to include children’s programming. They’d brought in a group of kids for me to tell to, and I did, but by the end of it the producer said we could even just do the stories with me telling them to the camera, and I thought, yeah, I could do that!

I started getting comfortable with just talking into the camera when I did my book talk/tutorials for my youtube channel.

It’s so weird to think of myself becoming okay in front of a camera. I’ve always been shy of watching myself on screen.

Oh! In the days of those Michael Coren shows where I used to be a guest!Yikes! Couldn’t stand watching myself. Cringed every time.

Now, not so much.

Allahu alim.

I realized it’s been fifteen days since my last blog post and I’ll try not to let that happen again although sometimes I wonder if anyone actually does read these ramblings of mine.

Been super super busy! With all sorts of things.

Oh, and another curious thing happened and it seems to be happening more and more. When I go to certain family functions, people are starting to introduce me as an author. Like first they’ll tell people my name, “Oh this is Rukhsana, she’s …’s wife/daughter in law, etc., and then they’ll add, ‘She’s a children’s author…” And other nice things along with that.

It’s kind of nice.

But what’s not so nice is that as I wrap up revisions on this current project, I’m getting really really scared that it might get rejected.

I’ve been second-guessing my skills for the longest while. What with all the rejections I’ve been receiving, and now with this project, it’s  a sequel for Wanting Mor, and there are parts that I like so much I keep re-reading them just for the fun of it.

That’s a good sign, right?

But I don’t know any more.

Oh well, I’m just scared it’ll get rejected too, and so it’s like I’ve been dragging my heels on finishing it. But finish it I will, insha Allah.

I was hoping to be done before Ramadan, but nope, got sidetracked with a bunch of other stuff.

And here now I come to Ramadan, and the summer solstice, the longest day of the year is a few days away, so yeah the fasts are basically as long and as difficult as they’re ever going to be, and for the next three years they’ll be this way. Not easy.

I couldn’t help dreading the fasting, and yet last night, at twilight, which heralded the beginning of the month because the night comes before the day, such a feeling of peace descended on my heart, as it always does in Ramadan. Peace and joy. And even though, yeah, it’ll be hard, there’s a part of me that welcomes it.

My mother in law said it well this morning. She said how much she loves Ramadan, and wishes it would last all year.

I haven’t quite gotten to the point where I wish it would last all year, but yes, I do love Ramadan.

With all its hardships, I still love it.

It is a blessed month!

And I hope to recharge and reboot and reconnect with family insha Allah.

So Ramadan Kareem everyone, whether or not you celebrate it.

May it be a month of peace and steadfastness for all of you.