Table talk with Jordanian author Sara Badawieh

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By Sarah Nabulsi

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Ever since the age of 12, Sara Badawieh has been creating stories of her own by transcribing vivid scenes from her head onto blank pieces of paper, creating murals of words and sentences. Badawieh writes not only to unleash her creativity but also to reflect and release negative energy, ideas, and thoughts onto paper.

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 “I get inspired by everything that goes around me and by everything I see and feel,” says the 31 year old. Whenever she is alone, her mind drifts to places beyond the realms of reality and she can’t help but write down these thoughts immediately after. Such thoughts then transform into sentences, then paragraphs, pages, and then into novels. Her debut novel, Beige and Blue, took five years to write and is influenced partly by architecture and art in the city of Amman.

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Badawieh’s latest novel, Dalia, took less than two years to complete. While it is a fiction novel, it discusses the effects of culture and tradition on people’s attitudes and behaviour. The author strongly believes in the power of reading and encourages people to develop the habit of reading to nourish the mind and cleanse the soul with information and creativity.

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“I wish I could spend all my time writing!” Sarah exclaims. The mother of two dedicates two hours of her mornings to writing.

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Badawieh’s tips for aspiring writers?“Be patient. Hold on because you have a long way ahead of you, but keep writing!” She goes on to share this technique: “Write for yourself as if no one is watching. That gives me the courage to go on without being judged or intimidated by what I write.”

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You can contact the author at info@sarabadawieh.com

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Dalia by Sara Badawieh

Book review by Sarah Nabulsi

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The Arabic word Dalia stems from the word for grapevine, which defies odds to grow above suffocating soils that once suppressed it beneath the earth. Similarly, Dalia, an eighteen-year-old in Sara Badawieh’s newest novel, defies her society’s suffocating grasp and expectations to craft her own destiny.

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Dalia loves to get lost in worlds found between the covers of any book she can get her hands on. Yet her love for books and her desire to attend university seems to anger her father, who is afraid such actions will tarnish his family’s honor. Still, Dalia persists towards achieving her dreams and she finds a job at a nearby bookshop to earn money for university without her father knowing. However, her life takes an unexpected turn when she has to face her father and family.

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This gripping novel is a thrilling rollercoaster of unexpected events. It showcases the adventure of Dalia as she faces and inspires her community with her passion for books and knowledge despite the suffocating obstacles she faces.