About writing, publishing, medicine, post-traumatic stress, and whatever else comes up that might interest you.
|Posted by ijsarfeh on May 5, 2013 at 4:35 PM||comments (0)|
|Posted by ijsarfeh on April 29, 2013 at 4:40 PM||comments (0)|
Recently, I entered this story in a Flash Contest. The Prompt: I turned away from my reflection. The mirror lied.
I got a bald patch and bandage over me head after they put stuff in it what makes me brain like everyone else’s. But I don’t want like everyone else’s ’cause Mummy and me stay home all the time and she learns me to speak proper and read and button me blouse.
The room is real cold and people stare and I get scared ’cause a gent in white says Maureen will soon think like us, so I start crying ’cause I love me think what I got now.
And then Mummy and Daddy give me a pink ribbon and Crunchie Bar and say happy eighteenth birthday and next month I got to go to school.
* * *
The kids at school laugh at me ’cause I’m much older and they fun me droopy eyes and teensy chin and drooly lips and huge tongue what hangs out. I don’t care, ’cause them is what’s me. But then meanie Belinda calls me Moron instead of Maureen and I get real mad ’cause Daddy says moron is a bad word. So I punch Belinda’s nose, and Mrs. Primpton says you should never ever punch anybody and she’ll tell Mummy I’m a bad girl.
* * *
Not long after I turned nineteen, the neurologist predicted that my reconstituted brain might improve my appearance, perhaps within two years. To avoid the daily—often hourly—disappointments, for the past year I have stopped looking in mirrors or at anything that might reflect my image—until today, my twenty-first birthday.
At sunrise, I rush to the attic, where my bedroom mirror is stored. For a long moment, I stare at me.
Gasping, I turn away from the reflection.
The mirror lied. It must have lied.
But did it?
I spin around.
My scourges are still there: frothy lips, enormous tongue, imperceptible chin—and the same droopy eyes that now blaze anger, hatred, distrust. I detest the young woman glaring back at me, the young woman whose brain is a product of implanted stem cells harboring “superior” DNA. Dark thoughts rage inside her head—dark thoughts about ugliness, about the curse of cerebral awakening. Mother and Father shout at her for the manic-depressive mood swings that range from explosions of violent temper to silence of sullen solitude. They never raised their voices to her before the metamorphosis.
Yesterday, I heard Father mumble, “I miss the real Maureen, our sweet, innocent child.”
Tears now stream my cheeks as I climb out of the attic window.
Forty feet below, the pavement beckons.
* * *
I wake up and it’s Christmas Day and a gent in white says I busted me head real bad and then Mummy reads me the Grinch what stole Christmas and Daddy gives me a pink ribbon and Crunchie Bar and he says welcome back Maureen.
|Posted by ijsarfeh on April 5, 2013 at 5:35 PM||comments (0)|
We visited Warwick Castle's falconry show last September. What a wonderful show! What magnificent birds!
|Posted by ijsarfeh on February 16, 2013 at 1:55 PM||comments (0)|
This critique is from a UK reviewer, Monica. She wrote this for Amazon UK:
5 out of 5 stars. A thriller to savour, 19 Dec 2012.
This review is from: Final Victim (Paperback).
I. J Sarfeh's medical thriller, `Final Victim', has all the ingredients which make up a really good read. The wry and gently engaging main character, Dr Greg Dostoyov, is pitched through a plot which twists and turns at a nicely judged pace, at first drawn in against his instincts but gradually taking control of events, egged on by the feisty `love interest', Kate. The scientific and medical details, without being overdone, feel utterly convincing; the prose is crisp and the dialogue sharp, while the story, which takes us from small-town Michigan via the Scottish highlands to the deserts of southern California, is well-worked and completely engrossing. The whole thing is leavened by touches of humour and genuine humanity which make this a book to savour.
|Posted by ijsarfeh on January 25, 2013 at 1:35 PM||comments (0)|
I just entered Amazon's Breakthrough Novel contest - along with 10,000 other writers. I submitted From the Ashes of Strife, my saga of an Iranian family's journey from Iran's Revolution to America's freedom. Wish me luck.
If you're interested in entering, here's the link:http://www.amazon.com/Breakthrough-Novel-Award-Books/b?ie=UTF8&node=332264011
|Posted by ijsarfeh on December 19, 2012 at 11:40 AM||comments (0)|
A reader by name of Monica, posted this on Amazon re my novel, The Final Victim:
I. J Sarfeh's medical thriller, `Final Victim', has all the ingredients which make up a really good read. The wry and gently engaging main character, Dr Greg Dostoyov, is pitched through a plot which twists and turns at a nicely judged pace, at first drawn in against his instincts but gradually taking control of events, egged on by the feisty `love interest', Kate. The scientific and medical details, without being overdone, feel utterly convincing (as one would expect, given Sarfeh's profession); the prose is crisp and the dialogue sharp, while the story, which takes us from small-town Michigan via the Scottish highlands to the deserts of southern California, is well-worked and completely engrossing. The whole thing is leavened by touches of humour and genuine humanity which make this a book to savour.
|Posted by ijsarfeh on December 7, 2012 at 5:00 PM||comments (0)|
I just came across this pleasant-surprise review on Amazon re my novel, "The Final Victim":
Great read. Found it hard to put down.Very interesting theme which was absorbing and held your attention to the very end.
I must say, it feels good to bring enjoyment to others.
|Posted by ijsarfeh on December 7, 2012 at 4:55 PM||comments (0)|
Richard Sutton, author of those fantastic novels, Home and Troll, invited me to participate in The Next Big Thing Blog Hop. So I’ll answer the questions and discuss my novel, Beyond the Third Garden,to be released in the spring by Musa Publishing.
Blog Hop questions:
What is the title of your book? Beyond the Third Garden.
Where did the idea come from for the book? As a child growing up in Iran, I relished family trips to a farm/oasis in the desert outside Tehran. I’ve often wondered what would become of the children living there if they were transported away from their isolated existences to a modern culture - such as western England, where I spent my formative years.
What genre does your book fall under? Literary fiction.
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition? If this were a much earlier era in the movie industry, I would pick Freddie Bartholomew as the protagonist, and Ava Gardner as his protector.
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book? An Iranian orphan and a middle-aged woman, both escaping horrific events in their past, meet at the foothills of the Alburz Mountains, and their turbulent friendship begins.
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency? Musa Publishing will publish the novel.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript? About three months. Then the revisions began.
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre? It’s sort of a David Copperfield type of novel. I can’t think of any modern ones like it.
Who or What inspired you to write this book? What inspired me to write it was spending my formative years away from home. I spent one of the holidays at an orphanage, where I met many other unhappy children.
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest? The theme of the story is PTSD - post-traumatic stress disorder. It is a hot topic currently as more and more of our soldiers experience the dreaded disorder during and after their tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan.
* * *
Be sure to visit Richard Sutton’s web site at http://www.sailletales.com/
|Posted by ijsarfeh on December 4, 2012 at 12:30 AM||comments (0)|
My publisher, Musa Publishing, today announced signing on Gary K. Wolf to its growing list of distinguished authors. Musa will publish the best-selling author's latest addition to the Roger Rabbit series: Who Whacked Roger Rabbit?
This is great news for Musa, the most promising firm in this rapidly morphing world of publishing. I'm proud indeed for Musa to have selected me as one of its authors.
|Posted by ijsarfeh on November 28, 2012 at 1:00 PM||comments (0)|
My musical season's greetings to all: