on lockdown with the rest of the world…

Week 1: a Saturday evening sunset at Redondo Beach, a site that is now closed Week One (March 16-22): Two weeks ago, all schools in Los Angeles and most of California announced closure – initially for a few weeks, but now with a “probable return date of May 5”...

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“the new normal”…

photograph by Richshell Allen, Pasadena City College photographer – “What compelled you to write about social justice issues?”– “How do you push past ‘writers’ block?'”– “Can you talk about why many of your stories focus on mothers and daughters?”– “How do you make decisions such as when to use...

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charcoal, cancellations, & social distancing…

Yesterday, I took blank paper and charcoal and zero instructions for my storytelling workshop participants The situation changes from one hour to the next, and the conversations that I had five days ago are no longer valid this morning. Most of my events this spring have been cancelled. Yesterday,...

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19 Dec, 2019

“black wings” best of 2019 fiction / entropy magazine…

19 Dec, 2019

I don’t check my twitter account that often, but today when I visited the page to see some updates, I was surprised to see myself tagged by multiple writers. The original post was by Entropy Magazine in which Black Wings was listed as Best of 2019: Best Fiction Books...

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“instead of retiring, I’m refiring…”

Writers including Peggy DoBreer, Hazel Harrison, Angela Franklin, Tanya Ho Kong, Jessica Ceballos y Campbell participating in a conversation with Luis Rodriguez at Avenue 50 Studio “Instead of retiring, I’m re-firing,” said Luis Rodriguez, 2014 Los Angeles Poet Laureate and founder of Tia Chucha’s Centro Cultural. Rodriguez was a Poets &...

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unexpected intersections…

Selfies: With Bettina Ng’weno (L); Sharon Fabriz (R) “I remember us facilitating Rice Writing Project sessions at the Rice School and how even then you had the title in mind. As I recall, we heard some of your scenes in first draft form!” I read in an email that arrived...

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the next “on belonging” installment…

“You could do a reading at Scripps and create an installation,” Myriam Chancy offered when I showed her images from my On Belonging site-specific installation at Houston’s Menil Collection (February 2018). Myriam, who serves as the Interim Director for the Humanities Institute at Scripps College and who I met...

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celebrate our voices / / BAN THE WALLS . . .

The statement below (written collaboratively by Diya Bose, Alicia Vogl Saenz, and me) was read in the order of writers above: Jamie Asaye Fitzgerald, Alicia Vogl Saenz, Elline Lipkin, Manuela Traude Gomez, Diya Bose, Lynn Harris Ballen, Lisbeth Coiman, and me (Sehba Sarwar); photo by Ayesha Kamran.  “Before we begin, we pause to acknowledge...

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macondo2019 after a tough take-off…

Workshop participants Reyna Grande, Macarena Hernández, Olivia Meña, Amelia María de la Luz Montes and partner, Liliana Valenzuela, Fan Wu, and Macondo board member Pat Aldrete with Sandra Cisneros and Ruth Behar at Liberty Bar  “I’m from Pasadena, but I lived in LA for one year,” said the Lyft driver as he turned down a three-lane...

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selling fast…

Top left: Gwendolyn Zepeda and some Houston Noir contributors at Murder by the Book, Houston, Texas; Top right: My reading at Skylight Books, Los Angeles, California; Bottom right and left: audience members and friends including moderators Jacsun Shah and Christa Forster, and Yolanda Alvarado, Margot Backus, Debbie Butt, Dinah Chetrit,...

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on the move …

My reading at Rio Hondo College’s annual literary festival with an image of my father, Dr. Mohammad Sarwar, in the background; photo by Tom Callinan “Thank you, miss,” a student said as I exited Rio Hondo College’s auditorium to walk toward my car. “Your story about borders makes me...

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global standout for peace / LA…

poster designed by Priyali Sur Last week, as fear of war between Pakistan and India, two nuclear-armed countries, remained a viable threat, activists around the globe organized to call for peace in South Asia as well as justice in Kashmir. Through WhatsApp chat groups spearheaded by my sister Beena Sarwar and...

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I was inspired to begin my blog when I visited my alma mater, Mount Holyoke College, where a photograph of my friends and me calling for divestment of funds from South Africa, is framed and exhibited in the library.

In 2007,  I began a blog when inspired by a visit to my alma mater where a photograph of my friends and me calling for divestment of funds from South Africa, is framed and exhibited in the library, I use the space to document my movement between spaces, Houston, Karachi, Delhi, Dhaka, Los Angeles and elsewhere, recording observations, images and conversations. My blog remains a space where I document the multiple realities that I inhabit–writer, artist, mother, activist, educator, and transnational. Interviews from my blog were exhibited at Houston’s Baker Ripley Community Center (2014) and at Houston Public Library in downtown (2015).