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The idea for Love and Pomegranates started after I traveled to Iran in 2005 and met the writers and translators smiling in this photo. I had been invited to participate in Iran’s First International Children’s Book Festival. Within days of arriving in Iran, I met many new friends who shared similar professional opinions, similar aspirations and a similar world view. Back home, I wondered how many others had traveled to Iran and found friendships, mentors and muses while there. So I asked around. One person lead to another, and story upon story, poem upon poem, arrived in my inbox.

While there are more than 67 writers, poets, artists, professors, teachers, journalists, businessmen and woman included in Love and Pomegranates, we would like to hear from you. If you have a story celebrating Iran that you would like to share, please send it to us at: writingandwandering@gmail.com and write “LP blog” in the subject line.

We look forward to receiving your stories!

 

Meghan Nuttall Sayres

 

Guest Lecture at UT Dortmund “Love and Pomegranates: An American Author’s Creative Interaction With Iran”

Posted by on Mar 21, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

I’ve been invited by Professor Walter Greunzweig of UT Dortmund in Germany to speak to American Studies studies students about my experiences in Iran and publishing novels and nonfiction set in the Middle East. The title of my Guest Lecture today is “Love and Pomegranates: An American Author’s Creative Interaction With Iran.”

UT Dortmund and the University of Iowa participate in an exchange program with each other, making it easier for students to spend a semester abroad.

I had a chance to snap some photos before the lecture:

Dortmund U Talk 2

Photo by Meghan Nuttall Sayres

 

Dortmund 1

Photo by Meghan Nuttall Sayres

 

 

Excerpt from “Travels With Ramazan” posted on PEN.org

Posted by on Mar 19, 2014 in Blog, Featured Excerpts | 0 comments

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The PEN American Center has posted an excerpt of one my short stories from Love and Pomegranates on the their website, PEN.org.

I am proud have my story shared by an organization whose mission is so close mine. The PEN American Center strives to promote literature and art as a way to bridge cultures and peoples. Programs range from book translation to the Young Adult Committee.

Together with our colleagues in the international PEN community, we have been bringing down barriers to free expression and reaching across borders to celebrate, through writing, our common humanity.
– from PEN.org

Read my excerpt at PEN.org

Love and Pomegranates Abound at San Jose State

Posted by on Nov 10, 2013 in Blog | 0 comments

Love and Pomegranates Abound at San Jose State

Last Thursday evening several contributors to the anthology Love and Pomegranates: Artists and Wayfarers on Iran gathered at San Jose State for a reading organized by Persis Karim, a professor of English literature and composition. I’d like to thank everyone who attended as well the Dr. Martin Luther King Library and Spartan Bookstore for hosting and providing books for this event.

 

I look forward to more readings or programs on Iran through out the year. Please check the calendar for the next event, which will be held at the University of Washington and the UW Bookstore after the holidays.

 

If you are in Spokane this week, join me at the Magic Lantern theater to watch For Spokane With Love, co-filmed and directed by Shahrokh Nikfar, a contributor to Love and Pomegranates, about his recent peace delegation to

Iran. In his words, “It’s the story of a great group of people from Spokane and Iran who created magic and love by opening their hearts and minds.” Showtime 7pm.

 

 

Pictured, left to right: Farnaz Fatime, Persis Karim, Jasmin Darznik, Meghan Sayres, Azin Arefi and Brian Appleton.

 

Seattle’s Iranian Festival Rocks

Posted by on Jul 9, 2013 in Blog | 0 comments

Iranian Fest Poster

Last weekend I was invited to talk at Seattle’s Iranian Festival, an event-filled day at Seattle Center. Hundreds of people attended, the place was packed all day with stage performances changing every 20 minutes or so with dancers, musicians, singers, comedians, cooks, authors and others. Among the attendees were avid readers who poured over the selection of Iranian and Persian related literature all day long at the Elliott Bay Books booth.

Two women from the Seattle area Tanya Fekri and Neilufar Naini joined me for a discussion about my new anthology Love and Pomegranates: Artists and Wayfarers in Iran. Both read from the pieces they contributed to the collection. “Weaving Through the Generations,” by Neilufar Naini is about finding strength and guidance from her grandmother’s carpet. In “Come and See Iran,” Tanya Fekfi interviewed Iranian tour guide Amir Haeri Mehrizi and talked about the importance of cultural exchange and dispelling preconceived notions about the other.

Check out more about Love and Pomegranates over at: loveandpomegranates.com where new essays, poetry and interviews will be offered each month.

Tanya Fekri (left) and Neilufar Naini at Seattle’s Iranian Festival, June 29, 2013

 

Tanya and Neilufar

A Love and Pomegranates Celebration

Posted by on Jun 11, 2013 in Blog | 0 comments

Last weekend I celebrated the publication of my anthology Love and Pomegranates: Artists and Wayfarers on Iran, published by Nortia Press. It is a collection of essays, poetry, interviews and blog posts written by ordinary people who have found friendships, mentors and muses in Iran. The collection aims to challenge many of the negative stereotypes about Iran and its people currently perpetuated in the Western media.

 

I invite you to read an excerpt of the first story in this collection, “The Frangrance of Naan,” by Shahrokh Nikfar on loveandpomegranates.com website. Shahrokh is a U.S. citizen who was born and raised in Tehran and who returned to his homeland in 2000 for the first time in twenty-one years. I’ve included an image of him in this post reading from his piece at a recent gathering of intrepid readers and travelers from Spokane, Washington.

 

Shahrokh hosts a weekly radio program The Persian Hour, KYRS Radio, Spokane, WA. I will soon upload a recent discussion between Shahrokh and myself about the story of how this anthology came to be, its 67 or so contributors, and their work on loveandpomegrantes.com and my personal website meghannuttallsayres.com.

 

Feel free to join our conversation celebrating Iranian culture at www.loveandpomegranates.com

Welcome to the Love and Pomegranates blog

Posted by on May 22, 2013 in Blog | 0 comments

Welcome to the Love and Pomegranates blog

The idea for Love and Pomegranates started after I traveled to Iran in 2005 and met the writers and translators smiling in this photo. I had been invited to participate in Iran’s First International Children’s Book Festival. Within days of arriving in Iran, I met many new friends who shared similar professional opinions, similar aspirations and a similar world view. Back home, I wondered how many others had traveled to Iran and found friendships, mentors and muses while there. So I asked around. One person lead to another, and story upon story, poem upon poem, arrived in my inbox.

While there are more than 67 writers, poets, artists, professors, teachers, journalists, businessmen and woman included in Love and Pomegranates, we would like to hear from you. If you have a story celebrating Iran that you would like to share, please send it to us at: writingandwandering@gmail.com and write “LP blog” in the subject line.

We look forward to receiving your stories!

 

The late Hossein Elvand Ebrahimi, Founder of The House of Translation For Children and Young Adult Books, Tehran, Iran.

The late Hossein Elvand Ebrahimi, Founder of The House of Translation For Children and Young Adult Books, Tehran, Iran.

Meghan Nuttall Sayress in Esfahan, Iran. Left to right: Pirouz, Mehdi, Javad, Katarina Varzi, Hossein Elvand Ebrahimi,Dona Jo Napoli and her husband, Meghan Nuttall Sayres and Jamila Gavin