aniyal Mueenuddin often thinks of mango trees when he’s not thinking about his fiction, said Radhika Jones in Time. The 45-year-old runs his family’s farm in Pakistan, and he’s come to enjoy a daily blending of his roles as both author and agriculturalist. “I crawl out of bed about 6, have some tea, and immediately I meet my managers,” he says. Once his men head for the fields, he writes until 2 p.m. Late afternoon finds him touring his greenhouses and orchards or poring over farm finances. The latter probably should get more attention than they do, he admits. “But it’s so much fun walking around.”
Mueenuddin is well practiced in straddling cultures, said Jeffrey A. Trachtenberg in The Wall Street Journal. The son of an American mother and a Pakistani father, he was reared in Punjab until age 13, at which point he was shipped to a Massachusetts boarding school. “Cue massive culture shock,” he says. After graduating from Dartmouth, he went back to the farm for seven years, then on to Yale Law School, a New York law firm, and finally a master’s program in writing. The stories in his acclaimed debut collection, In Other Rooms, Other Wonders, draw solely on his Pakistani life. Still, if he had to choose one vocation, Mueenuddin would quit farming first. “I would miss it tremendously,” he says. But “I can’t imagine giving up writing.”
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- 7 ways to be the most interesting person in any room
- Sorry Belle Knox, porn still oppresses women
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- Colorado’s new ‘drive high, get a DUI’ commercials are actually pretty clever
- Who are the real gay marriage bigots?
- Religious liberty should be a liberal value, too
- What the collapse of the Ming Dynasty can tell us about American decline
- 22 TV shows to watch in 2014
- Why is American internet so slow?
- Watch The Daily Show mock Fox News' confused man-crush on Vladimir Putin
Subscribe to the Week