Lit & Found: Five Short Fictions and Three Interviews from Diaa Jubaili

Iraqi writer Diaa Jubaili was born in Basra, Iraq, where he still lives. He is the author of eight novels and three short story collections, including What Will We Do Without Calvino?, winner of the Tayeb Salih International Award for Creative Writing, and No Windmills in Basra, winner of the Almultaqa Prize for the Short Story. He was a contributor to the short story collection Iraq +100 and has written for the Guardian.

His collection of short-short fiction, No Windmills in Basra, appeared this week in Chip Rossetti’s translation from Deep Vellum Press. To mark the occasion, this week’s “Lit & Found” searched up stories by and interviews with Jubaili.

Why flash fiction? Jubaili told The Vestal Review: “. . . what’s most distinctive about writing of this kind is its odd subject matter and its attempt to provoke questions and generate dazzlement in the reader’s mind. Of course, that’s in addition to building the scene aesthetically, using poetic language that avoids directness, and telegraphing intent.”

Short fiction:

The Hat Stand,” translated by Chip Rossetti

The Scarecrow,” translated by Chip Rossetti

The Darwinist,” translated by Alexander Hong

Excerpts from novels:

The Cloven Man: Six Ways of Crossing Borders Illegally,” from al-Mashtoor, translated by Yasmeen Hanoosh

From The Lion of Basra, translated by Hend Saeed


A two-part interview with Comma Press: One and Two

An interview with The Vestal Review