Mama & Author Karen Osman Chats About Her Newly Published Book ‘The Good Mother’
Karen Osman is a mama and now a published author (yay!) who’s lived in Dubai since 2004. With her own content writing company Travel Ink, she recently wrote her first novel ‘The Good Mother’ when she was pregnant with her second son Ryan and looking after her toddler Zane! We chatted to Karen about the book, about being a mama in Dubai and lots more too.
Congratulations on winning first prize for your novel ‘The Good Mother’ – could you give us a synopsis of the book?
Thank you! The book was published on 1 October and it’s been a really exciting journey so far! I wrote The Good Mother with the aim of creating a gripping psychological suspense novel. It is based around the stories of three women. Catherine is a good mother and a good wife but when she starts writing to Michael, a prisoner convicted of murder, she finds herself obsessing about his crime and whether he can ever truly be forgiven. Kate is bringing up two young children and has no time for herself. Faced with the drudgery, compounded with money worries and an unsupportive husband, she looks for excitement elsewhere and finally Alison, who has just started university. It’s not the life she had hoped for, and she finds herself alone and unhappy, until the day her professor takes a sudden interest in her. As each woman’s story unfolds, the reader is drawn into a world of deceit and revenge, ultimately showcasing just how powerful the emotions associated with motherhood can be.
They say that everyone has a book in them – has this been something you’ve wanted to do for years? What made you finally do it?
I have always written throughout my life but I had imagined writing novels when I was older, perhaps retired. However, I entered a novel writing competition in 2016 and to my surprise, won. The competition was part of the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature and was judged by renowned agent, Luigi Bonomi of LBA Associates based in London. It was a fantastic opportunity to have my novel selected by an industry professional and from there, Luigi helped me secure a three-book deal with Head of Zeus.
What advice do you have for anyone else keen to have a go at writing a novel?
I would encourage anyone who is keen on writing a novel to write each day so it becomes a habit, read widely, and talk and connect with other authors. In my case, it helped that I wrote a book of a genre that I enjoyed reading but that might not be the case for everybody. It’s also a good idea to have a deadline so you have something to work towards.
What does the future hold for you?
The Good Mother came out on 1 October 2017 so I’ve been busy launching that while also writing my second novel, which will be out in 2018. It’s a thriller about a woman called Angela who grew up in the harsh environment of a children’s home in the sixties. Despite being an abandoned child, she still yearns to meet her real mother, Evelyn. The novel describes Angela in her late-twenties as she tracks her down. At the same time, a series of unexplained, frightening incidences befall Evelyn and as Angela and her birth mother gradually reunite, Evelyn starts to believe Angela is secretly trying to take her revenge for giving up her daughter for adoption.
What do you love about being a mama in Dubai and about living in the city?
There are many things I love about living in Dubai as a mum, such as the safety, the outdoor lifestyle during the cooler months, and meeting people from all over the world. There’s always something new to see or do and I love the location of Dubai as it makes travel easy to explore both Europe and Asia.