English novelist, Anees Saleem, shares the hope that his sixth novel will be released this year. Anees, a native of Varkala, who had been living in Kochi for 20 years as the Creative Director of an advertising company, is writing this book after a gap of 3 years. His last novel was “The Small-Town Sea“, published in 2017.
Anees said that though the novel is releasing after the pandemic outbreak, neither COVID nor Quarantine is it’s theme. The novel is set against the backdrop of Hyderabad, which fascinated Anees during his journey to become a writer. This novel is the culmination of a lot of research.
Anees continues to work from home for his advertising company. He came to Kochi from Mumbai, just 3 days before the lockdown. He remembers that he would have had to stay in Mumbai for some time if he had not returned from Mumbai at that time. Anees, who had been traveling a lot for work and on his own, has not seen the outside world since March. During the pandemic, one room in the house has been converted into an office, while the other two rooms have been converted into a school. Anees Saleem reveals that even though we live in this pandemic situation, we can no longer record it in writing in a contemporary way. Maybe after a while he’ll write about COVID.
His journey as a writer was tiring. His first two books were rejected by the publishers. He altered his style of writing for the third book. Although it took more than 20 years for the first book to be published, Anees is happy that all the published novels have been well received by readers. He also won the Kendra Sahitya Akademi Award in 2018 along with several other awards.