The novel Amor en la villa del mar Blanco by the Saharawi writer and translator, Ali Salem Iselmu, is about to be published,
In order to publish it, a Crowdfunding campaign has been launched, in which people can collaborate, especially “those who are looking for a book that takes them to another culture and another landscape”.
Ali Salem Iselmu has opened a new path to enter the genre of the novel, after a long career as a poet, author of short stories, and translator into Spanish of other Sahrawi colleagues. We spoke to him about this new adventure.
Pressenza: The novel speaks of love, love between two young people who meet, love that crosses time and borders, love for the land that has seen us born and from which we were torn away, love for our history.
Ali Salem Iselmu: What I can tell readers about this work is the force with which love, in the midst of pain, moves the protagonists of this book. Javier Errasti and Mahfud Uld Omar are the friendship that overcomes time and separation. Naiara and Sidi are the grandchildren who continue the story when they fall in love. They pay homage to the union of the desert nomads with the inhabitants of the rainforest. The union of jaimas and hamlets. In short, love as an antidote to pain and separation. The survival of a camp suffering persecution and death. The memory of a family that struggles to remain united despite its tragic destiny.
Q.- What is the spirit that nestles and animates the whole novel?
ASI: The spirit that nestles throughout the novel is the passion that is born in its characters when they orientate themselves with the stars, when they light the fire, when they greet each other. The force of an extreme nature builds in this book a story that overcomes pain and redeems itself with each act of survival.
Q.- We know you especially for your poetry, how did the idea of writing a novel come about and what journey have you lived through to see it finished?
ASI: I had a debt pending as a writer, a debt that had led me to write poems, short stories, books in the style of “The Thousand and One Nights”. Then I began to mature the idea of writing a novel. I began to read Dostoyevsky, Chekhov, García Márquez, London, Pío Baroja, among others. Afterwards I consulted several writer friends, I made a trip to the north of Mauritania and there I found a piece of Western Sahara that inspired me to construct this story.
Q.- It says in the preamble: “Love in exceptional conditions conquers death, separation and pain…” Do you believe that love can conquer this system of death, separation and pain?
ASI: I believe that love is the main force in the universe, love is a creative and constructive force. The characters in my book face death and pain in extreme conditions. They are saved because they face their destiny with passion and courage. Love teaches them the way to freedom.
Q.- We know that the publisher has launched a Crowdfunding campaign. How is it going and what should anyone who wants to collaborate and secure a copy of the book do?
ASI. – Well, from the publishing house “libros.com” we started a Crowdfunding campaign on 25 October, we still have a week and a few days left. We have reached 80% of support. I think we are close to the target. I encourage literature lovers, those who are looking for a book that takes them to another culture and another landscape. This is your chance to become a patron and buy a copy.