I wrote Letters From Diaspora as a small project in an effort to raise some money for Bosnian organizations and re-direct some attention to them and while it’s never been the book I wanted to write first it is one I am thankful I ended up writing. Mainly, because despite the very emotional process of writing it I experienced a catharsis in sharing this pain with others. Letters from Diaspora is a collection of 12 short stories that focus on how Bosnians that survived the war and genocide in the early 90s are dealing with the aftermath of war and genocide, surviving it and dealing with survivor’s guilt. The stories range in focus on PTSD, nostalgia for lost loves and a lost home, to dealing with the adjustment of being an immigrant due to a war-torn country.
But really it is much more than that. These stories may be fictionalized but they are also real, they were formed from bits and pieces of notes I’ve jotted down in my conversations with fellow Bosnians late at night at a bar or a concert or during an early morning at the mosque when there was nobody around but me to hear their vulnerability. These stories do not belong to me, even if I did write them. They are the stories of some of my people and this book was always written for them, for me, for us to heal.