Wednesday, October 11, 2017

All Inclusive by Farzana Doctor

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Farzana Doctor will be awarding a $15 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner and a print copy of the book to 10 randomly drawn winners (US Only) via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Why do you write in your genre? What draws you to it?

My favourite books have always been works of literary fiction that have either a touch of magical realism or politicized perspectives about contemporary culture, or both. I like novels that make me think deeply about a character’s motivations and actions and help me learn about an experience I’ve never had myself. I like to laugh out loud and have my heart crack open a little.

What research is required?

One of All Inclusive’s protagonists is a spirit. Much of the time, he “came” to me as a voice in my head (I get most of my material from listening to these voices), but I also had to figure out some of his abilities and limits for the plot to work.

I borrowed some spirituality from Islam and asked a psychic some questions about her take on the afterlife. I’m also an amateur tarot reader and sometimes used this tool to help me find answers.

Name one thing you learned from your heroine.

My other protagonist, Ameera, is a young woman who stumbles into the swingers’ scene while working at a resort in Mexico. Most writers will tell you that it’s almost impossible to write sex scenes well, and they avoid the challenge altogether.

But I wanted to grow myself as a writer, and write her sex scenes in a way that both revealed her character and moved the plot forward. At the same time I needed her to be embodied, and well, really write sex as it is—messy, clumsy, ecstatic, fun, annoying! Ameera taught me how to do this.

Do you have any odd or interesting writing quirks, habits or superstitions?

I’ve never admitted this publicly, but what the heck! Each time I’ve written a novel’s first full manuscript draft, I begin to have all kinds of catastrophic thoughts about my computer exploding, or worse, that I’ll die before the book is published! So I usually email the document to a friend for safe-keeping and this calms me down.

Are you a plotter or pantser?

A combination. I like to know the story’s arc and the characters’ main obstacles and desires before I begin writing. I’ll sometimes brainstorm a list of scenes to help me for when I get stuck later. And then the rest of it is pantsing, I guess, where I listen deeply to my creative unconscious and the spirits voices that come to me.

Look to your right – what’s sitting there?

My morning cup of coffee, which I think is a comfort object for me. I like to have a cup of something warm beside my laptop when I write.

Anything new coming up from you? What?

The US launch for All Inclusive is tomorrow night! If your readers are in NYC on October 12th, I hope they will join me! Details:

I’ve just finished the 8th draft of my 4th novel, Unfamiliar Skin, which I hope will come out sometime in 2018/9.

Do you have a question for our readers?

From your experience of reading, do you think it’s true that it’s hard for writers to write sex scenes well?

A story about an all-inclusive resort, the ghost of an unknown father, and the tragedies we can’t forget.

What’s it like when everyone’s dream vacation is your job? Ameera works at a Mexican all-inclusive resort, where every day is paradise — if “paradise” means endless paperwork, quotas to meet, and entitled tourists. But it’s not all bad: Ameera’s pastime of choice is the swingers scene, and the resort is the perfect place to hook up with like-minded couples without all the hassle of having to see them again.

Despite Ameera’s best efforts to keep her sideline a secret, someone is spreading scandalous rumours about her around the resort, and her job might be at stake. Meanwhile, she’s being plagued by her other secret, the big unknown of her existence: the identity of her father and why he disappeared. Unbeknownst to Ameera, her father, Azeez, is looking for her, and they both must come to terms with the reason why he abandoned her.

A moving new work from award-winning author Farzana Doctor, All Inclusive blurs the lines between the real world and paradise, and life and death, and reminds us that love is neither easily lost nor found.

Read an Excerpt:

March 27, 2015, Huatulco, Mexico

A DC8 droned above.

“Here they come,” I announced. Friday was our departure-arrival day. One sunburned and grouchy group left for their northern homes, and another cohort, ecstatic and pale, touched down and took their place.

Roberto grabbed a plastic file-box and gestured for me to sit beside him. I lowered myself onto the makeshift seat and wiped away a slick of perspiration from the creases behind my knees.

“Ameera, you hear about that tour rep getting fired over at Waves?” Roberto stroked his thin moustache.

“Nancy? Yeah, I’m still in shock.” I hadn’t known her well, but I’d gone clubbing with her and the other tour reps from our sister resorts a few times. She’d seemed all right to me. The airplane circled closer, and, in unison, we clapped our hands over our ears and tilted our chins to the sky. After it had rolled across the tarmac and quieted its engines, we resumed our gossip.

“What I don’t get is why someone in their late twenties would want to have sex with a fifteen-year-old.” Roberto shook his head, as though trying to dislodge the idea.

“But didn’t the kid lie about his age? He told her he was eighteen, right?” While I’d never in a million years sleep with a teenager, I could imagine how booze and loneliness could have led Nancy to her mistake.

About the Author:
Farzana Doctor is the author of three novels: Stealing Nasreen, Six Metres of Pavement (which was a 2012 Lambda Literary Award and the 2017 One Book One Brampton winner) and the recently released All Inclusive which was a Kobo and National Post Best Book of the Year. Farzana was named one of CBC Books’ “Ten Canadian Women Writers You Need to Read Now”. She is also a Registered Social Worker with a part-time psychotherapy practice. She curates the Brockton Writers Series.

Book trailer:
Book club guide:

Buy the book at Charis Books and More or Amazon.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. I really enjoyed reading your interview, thank you!

  2. Thanks for hosting me today! I'll be checking in from time to time if your readers have questions.

  3. What book would you like to see a sequel to? Thanks for the giveaway. I hope that I win. Bernie W BWallace1980(at)hotmail(d0t)com

  4. Great post - I enjoyed reading it. Thanks for sharing :)

  5. I have no doubt that the sex scenes would be hard to write.

  6. Congrats on the new book and good luck on the book tour!


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