Interview with longlisted author Abdullah Albsais


When did you begin writing M for Murderer, S for Sa’id and where did the inspiration for it come from?

I began writing it at the end of 2016. I’m wary of how people usually interpret “inspiration”. I believe that inspiration is a simple idea which the writer takes up in earnest and works hard to develop. This was the case with M for Murderer, S for Sa’id. It began as an average concept which I worked hard at every stage in the writing process to make into a remarkable one. 


Did it take a long time to write, and where were you when you finished it?

It took three years. At the time, I was studying English Literature in Ottawa, Canada. Then I transferred my studies to the Arab Open University, Kuwait. I finished my studies at the end of 2018, to devote myself to writing the novel full time. 


How have readers and critics received it?

The reception has been fantastic, which for me is the real achievement.


What is your next literary project after this novel?

It’s a novel, which is nearly finished.