LAHORE: The launch of novel The House of Clay and Water by renowned novelist Faiqa Mansab was held at The Last Word on Thursday. The novel depicts the inequalities of the community with religious and societal minorities. The novel is based on the tragic love story of a politician’s wife and a hermaphrodite. The novel also portrays the Sufism and how a person’s life can change with the affiliation of Sufism. A teacher and school administrator by profession, Faiqa Mansab is an MFA creative writing graduate. Her short stories and an excerpt from her novel were published in The Missing Slate, an international literature magazine, in 2013. Talking about the novel, inspiration and the theme of the novel, Faiqa said she was very close to the shrines and Sufism because her mother used to visit shrines of Shah Hussain and Data Ali Hajveri and she went along her mother. “Data Ali Hajveri is always very close to my heart because I believed that he was among the first Muslims who came to the Indian Subcontinent and brought Islam here,” she said. About the title of the novel, she revealed that she first chose the title “Qalandar” for her novel, which she later changed when her tutor told her that it was not a universal title. She said that in our society, being a Qalandar or saint means negating the realities of societies and usually such people are termed “mad” in such a situation. To a quarry regarding why she chose a transgender for her novel, she said that we usually see transgender people in our routine life as beggars or as dancers but the main character of her novel Bhangi was a different transgender with a broader vision. While talking about difference among fiction, reality and imagination, Faiqa went on to say that reality was more important because it was happening. Published in Daily Times, October 6th 2017.