(Photo by Anjali Bhargava)
Our featured author for 2011 is Cihan Kaan, born on a Transcendental Meditation Commune in Texas and raised in Brooklyn. Kaan is a filmmaker and musician, which is the secret ingredient to the dynamism behind his writing.
Discovered by UpSet Press during the screening of his film: She’s Got an Atomic Bomb, in 2005, Kaan has written a fantabulous first book. As his manuscript grew, so did our press. We are happy to announce Kaan as our first fiction title and our most successful author (even before the book has been released). He’s gone from punk squat, to Park Slope loft, to the State Department and to university campuses on speaking engagements (and taken the press with him). It has certainly been as adventurous and, at times as surreal, as some of his stories in the collection.
Due to both the strategic title, Halal Pork (the title alone has irked or shocked or tickled new readers to our readings) and to the dashing comedic style in his readings, Kaan’s book has been the most pre-ordered book during our history as a press (our first book was published in 2004).
His book will be released in 3 weeks. Stay tuned for more information on the launch and celebrations of his book. Send us a note if you are interested in reviewing the book. And for all of you who have followed the updates, written us notes of support, and wanted to teach this book in your classrooms — THANK YOU! The book will be here soon, very soon! And we cannot wait to share it with you.
2010 Year in Review:
October 6, 2010: NYC
Linh Dinh’s “Love Like Hate” and Cihan Kaan’s “Halal Pork and Other Stories”
Asian American Writers’ Workshop
September 7, 2010: DC
Cihan Kaan was invited to Generation Change: The Next Generation of American Muslim Leaders, an event that brought together American Muslim leaders for a conference and was held before the State Department Iftar Dinner. Here is an official note about Generation Change:
This year’s Iftar included a special emphasis on the young generation of American Muslims. Why the generation under the age of 30? Over half of the nearly 1.6 billion Muslims on the planet are under the age of 35, and we want to do more to build stronger long terms partnerships with these young people. Our embassies around the world are focusing on engagement with this young generation
of Muslims as well; whether in Muslim-majority countries, or nations where Muslims are a minority, we are finding ways to build partnerships and share ideas.Farah Pandith, Special Representative to Muslim Communities
U.S. Department of State Official Blog
Kaan was quoted as saying: