Sema Kaygusuz: The Fall of Prayers

The author of novels, short essays and a screenplay, born in 1972. She studied public relations, worked as a theatre actress and for a radio station, and currently, she teaches creative writing. Kaygusuz has published five collections of short stories, e.g., Sandık Lekesi [Box Stain], Doyma Noktası [Saturation Point], and Esir Sözler Kuyusu [The Well of Trapped Words]. Her first novel, Yere Düşen Dualar [The Fall of Prayers] was published in 2006. The book, which was welcomed by literary circles, was included in the list of “The Best 10 Turkish Books That Were Published in the Last 25 Years” by the newspaper Vatan. It combines the structure of myth with modern prose, and an extraordinary effect is reached by using creative and poetical language. Beside other novels, Yüzünde Bir Yer [A Spot on Your Face] and Sultan ve Şair [Sultan and Poet], she also co-wrote the script of Yeşim Ustaoğlu’s film Pandora’s Box. “If I should say what draws me to writing, naturally, I have to think bigger than just the frame of national literature. In reality, all writers of the world exist outside of the state borders. As soon as I leave Turkey, though, I’m being labelled as a woman writer, a Turk and a Muslim, and everybody is asking me about Islam,” Sema writes in one of her essays.