Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

The Word On The Street Interview Series: Nazneen Sheikh

Share |
Nazneen Sheikh

The air is cooling, the kids are back to school and The Word On The Street is almost here! We're counting down the days to September 27 with book giveaway contests and conversations with some of the talented authors appearing at the festival.

Today we speak to Nazneen Sheikh, the author of The Place of Shining Light (House of Anansi Press). The Place of Shining Light tells the story of three men racing against time to find a sacred 5,000-year-old Buddhist sculpture. When one of the men decides to steal the sculpture for himself, the others must decide how far they will go to get it back.

Nazneen will be reading in the Vibrant Voices of Ontario Tent, along with an amazing roster of other Ontario-based authors.

Today, she tells us about which Giller longlisted story collection was a favourite recent read of hers, her advice for a successful public reading and her favourite Toronto lookout.

Don't forget to mark September 27, 2015 on your calendars to catch Nazneen and dozens of other fantastic authors at The Word On The Street.

Open Book:

Tell us about what you’ll be reading in the Vibrant Voices tent.

Nazneen Sheikh:

I shall be reading from my new novel The Place of Shining Light.


Have you attended The Word On The Street in the past? If so, tell us about a favourite memory. If not, what are you most looking forward to?


Yes I have attended WOTS for my last book Moon over Marrakech. Many books were sold that day. I was quite surprised by this. I loved the setting at Queen’s Park and meeting some of my peers.


The Vibrant Voices tent celebrates Ontario authored and published books. Tell us about a favourite Ontario author or book.


The last book I have read authored by an Ontario writer was Confidence by Russell Smith. This is a collection of short stories set in Toronto. The author’s observations are acute as he delves into social mores and the complexities of urban relationships.


What’s the best advice about public readings you have ever received?


I have done many public readings. I strongly believe that if an author cannot project or enunciate well they should not read. Also it is very important to have a silent audience.


Do you have a favourite spot in Ontario?


I love going to the Filtration Plant on Queen street east. The grassy slopes and the vista of the lake transports one to other places.


What can you tell us about your next project?


I have two at present. A novel set in the US, and one which may be set in an undefined place.

Nazneen Sheikh has written several works of fiction and non-fiction for adult and young adult audiences, including Moon Over Marrakech: A Memoir of Loving Too Deeply in a Foreign Land, Chopin People and Ice Bangles. Her culinary memoir, Tea and Pomegranates: A Memoir of Food, Family and Kashmir was a critically acclaimed success. Nazneen was born in Kashmir and went to school in Pakistan and Texas. She lives in Toronto.

Related item from our archives

Related reads

JF Robitaille: Minor Dedications


Open Book App Ad