Humber School for Writers graduate Sharif Khan recently published his first novel, Brave Fortune. He told us how it came to be and how Humber helped along the way.
Tell us about your book/project? How did it come about?
My debut novel is titled Brave Fortune, which comes from the Latin proverb, “Fortune favours the brave,” meaning fortune or luck tend to favour those who are bold and take chances and risks.
The inspiration for the novel was a continuation of my fascination with the hero’s journey from my nonfiction inspirational book, The Hero Soul, and wanting to take the concept to the next level.
Brave Fortune is a fantasy adventure novel that uses alchemy, the transmutation of base metal into gold, as an allegory for the transformational heroic journey through trial by fire.
How did you find the experience of working with your writing mentor? What insight into your writing did you gain through the mentorship process?
After writing Brave Fortune, I decided to make a big investment in my writing career and was accepted into the Humber School for Writers’ graduate certificate program in creative writing.
My assigned mentor was screenwriter and novelist Giles Blunt, whose Cardinal detective books got turned into a hit TV series. Giles guided me in developing a contemporary crime novel which is now complete but not yet released. I intend to publish it at some point.
The biggest insight I gained working with Giles was to tighten up my prose by avoiding overwriting and making each scene more focused, based on character motivation.
I finished the correspondence program in 2016. Fast forward three years, and, quite fortuitously, being a Humber alumnus, I was notified of a unique self-publishing initiative offered in partnership between Humber’s School for Writers and Humber’s Creative Book Publishing program.
I submitted my fantasy novel, Brave Fortune, for consideration and was accepted!
Alison Maclean, who was the program co-ordinator of CBPP at the time, helped facilitate the development of my book by assigning two Humber CBPP students; Nicole Lambe designed the book cover and Matthew Casaca helped me with the copyediting. The advice and guidance I had received from my Humber writing mentor helped a lot in the editing phase!
Brave Fortune is now available to purchase on Amazon! Here’s what one reader had to say:
★★★★★ "Action adventure, dark fantasy, psychological intrigue...a treat for the mind."
Photo credit: Marco Lappano