Nasrallah – an interesting interview for The Arab Edition “In this novel there are aspects of sci-fi, frivolity, fantasy, black comedy and also exoticism.”

26 April 2018 115 views No Comment Email This Post Email This Post Print This Post Print This Post

Nasrallah_AFPAn interview conducted by Maan Jalal for The Arab Edition – below an excerpt.

 The Second War of the Dog sees our anti-hero protagonist within a fantasy sci-fi setting. Acting as an opponent to an oppressing regime that cherishes power we see him transform into to an extremist. Parallels are obvious in the novel to what the Arab world has witnessed from social and political unrest over the last few years.

‘I was definitely influenced,’ Nasrallah says, ‘the bloody reality that we have witnessed and lived in for last few years has left a large impact on me. This was the exact reason that I wrote this novel.’




What is your process of writing? Do you have a plan or is it more organic?
I always plan my novels. Every novel I’ve ever written I had thought of the idea at least five years prior to writing it. Some of my novels I wrote twenty-two years after planning them.

Readers may be surprised by how different this novel is compared to your previous work. Why did you want to explore the sci-fi fantasy genre?
The subject matter lends its self to the writing style and the appropriate form. One cannot talk about a strange world in a style that is artistically traditional. In this novel there are aspects of sci-fi, frivolity, fantasy, black comedy and also exoticism.


What was the experience like to write the journey of an anti-hero? Did you sympathise with him?
A writer must put all his effort and attention to every character he writes in order to create an effective and influential character. I’ve always written about characters who are anti-heroes, I enjoy it. I cannot say that writing the character was hard, but the strange reality that he lives in was something that was psychologically tiring for me as a writer as was the writing of the novel, which was exhausting. As for sympathy, it’s a complex issue. A writer shouldn’t be revealed within his text. He should leave sympathy or it’s opposite to the reader. What was enjoyable however, was creating and inventing the sci-fi and fantasy devices (within my writing) to suit this future world.

There is something that attracts readers to anti-heroes or characters that self-destruct. Why do you think that is?
I think these types of characters are full of internal struggles, conflicts and contradictions. So they form a kind of lure for writing and for the discovery of something new about the human soul, the opposite of characters who are typically self-assured.



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