An Accidental Jihad


Writer Krista Bremer met Ismail fifteen years ago on a North Carolina running trail. A romantic relationship developed through an unexpected pregnancy, eventual marriage, and subsequent spiritual growth. Krista’s recent memoir, My Accidental Jihad, details her jump into the deep space of marriage and an unexpected faith journey.

Deonna Kelli Sayed speaks with Krista and Ismail  — “Ish” for short — about the bicultural nature of all marriages, Krista’s writing process, and her evolving spiritual journey.

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Melody Moezzi’s Bipolar Life

Melody Moezzi's powerful memoir available now.

Love, Inshallah Author Interview: Melody Moezzi, Haldol to Hyacinths: A Bipolar Life

Narrated and produced by Deonna Kelli Sayed

DKS: In the 2011 anthology, Love, Inshallah: The Secret Love Lives of American Muslim Women, Melody Moezzi wrote about her struggle with chronic physical illness and how her husband provided love, support, and compassion.  Melody’s latest book-length work, Haldol to Hyacinths: A Bipolar Life, is a deeply personal, often humorous memoir that explores her journey with Bipolar 1 Disorder and how faith, cultural identity, and love illuminates her recovery.

A lawyer, award-wining author and an activist, Melody’s identity as an Iranian-American-Muslim woman becomes a metaphor for her struggle to understand her illness,  one she shares with approximately 4.4% of American society.

I asked her to explain how a highly educated, lucky-in-love, Iranian-American woman decides to reveal a deeply personal story about a misunderstood and often stigmatized diagnosis.

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Corona — Not the Beer — But the Place in Queens

bushra-frontcover-finalLove, InshAllah is proud to feature occasional author interview podcasts. This episode features Deonna Kelli Sayed interviewing Bushra Rehman about her Poets and Writers featured novel, Corona. 

Deonna Kelli Sayed (DS): Here at Love, Inshallah, we are proud to focus on powerful personal stories from Muslim women and men, and sometimes, writers of other faiths, on love, marriage, family and life, in general.  The 2011 call for Love, InshAllah book submissions asked for something simple yet transformative: American-Muslim women writing on something many people do not associate with the Muslim experience – love and relationships.

New York City-based poet, Bushra Rehman, found the idea of writing about love intriguing. Love, InshAllah inspired one chapter from her debut novel, Corona, a collection of stories about love, loss and transcultured identity, a book she says is:

Bushra Rehman (BR): Corona is a dark comedy about being South Asian in the United States. It is a poetic, on-the-road adventure novel starring Razia Mirza, a Pakistani girl from Queens, who gets disowned by her family, and who ends up taking a Greyhound bus and having adventures all over the country.

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Michael Muhammad Knight on Tripping with Allah: Islam, Drugs, and Writing

Love, Inshallah is excited to debut our first podcast! editor Deonna Kelli Sayed recently interviewed author Michael Muhammad Knight about his new book, Tripping with Allah: Islam, Drugs, and Writing, where he discussed his spiritual use of the hallucinogenic plant, ayahuasca, and the struggles between his writing voice and emerging academic persona. Deonna produced the following podcast, where Mr. Knight revealed his inspiration for the book and how the ayahuasca experience changed him.

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