Fizza Hassan tells us about her new book Hear Me.
Welcome to freelance writer and traveller, Fizza Hassan!
I have spent the last 12 years living as an expatriate life globally. I was a Human Resource Specialist in UAE, Europe and Southeast Asia. Writing and travelling as a freelance. This gave me the exposure to learn in depth about cultures, languages and authentic foods, and it is a real beauty to me. Besides writing, I am involved in various volunteering work such as counselling and give motivational talk to the youth's today.
I am currently working on my unfinished novel. The series of my first book is called "The Living Secret". It takes longer than I thought, plotting the characters, assembling the main and protagonist back and forth... isn't this typical writer? Too many stories and very limited time, as I ended in limbo. Nevertheless, this year, I am determined to complete the story with no excuses. So, stay tuned and watch my space!
Both books are challenging to me. However, I don't deny, writing my new release book called "Hear Me"-end of mental health stigma was the biggest challenge. I wrote this book during the lockdown and I was feeling isolated in my own cubicle space and it is hard. I've interviewed individuals who suffered from mental health for two hours and going through their journey is devastating. I feel honoured working on this book and I've learned a lot more than what I've learned in school. Case studies always teach me and yet surprise me in many ways. That is the beauty of writing this book. And not forgetting my group research team from clinical psychology, add value into it.
I've always enjoyed classic books and my favourite author of all is Ivo Andric. The Yugoslav novelist, poet and have won the Nobel Prize in Literature during his late 50s. He inspires me in many ways. In terms of writing, poetry and style of writing. He is very much involved in humanity and wrote from the heart and he sees people like nobody else. I wish I could meet him and spend time sharing about his creative mind, how I wish. Rest in peace Ivo.
One person who inspired me was my soulmate friend who sat alone in Malta nothing else, only with his beloved cello and boring job, accountant. Yet he survived. He is the only person who has driven me to where I am now. He read and criticized honestly without no prejudice. I remembered we used to share moments together every time I visited Malta. He played beautiful music and I wrote poetry. It was a remarkable memory.
Collections of 35 stories and essays illustrate depression and suicidal thoughts through different voices. The book covers a spectrum of experiences, from spiraling into a depression for the first time to living with it to recovering. True inspiring individuals must read and with the support group of research from clinical psychologists.