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The fav four
Favorite iranian.com writers in 2001

May 8, 2002
The Iranian

When Laleh Khalili emailed her journal about her trip to Iran, I thought she had made a mistake. Her writing was way too good for iranian.com, I thought. I was excited and flattered -- and very nervous. Why would such a good writer even consider writing for iranian.com? She wasn't a friend or relative. So why...?

That was five years ago. Back then, it was rare to see really good original writing here. But thanks to Laleh Khalili's "Absence", more and more amazing writers began sending their work. Today there are nearly 100 individuals who have had at least five features published in iranian.com -- in addition to hundreds of others who have at least one feature.

So when your votes from last August's readers' poll were counted, I was thrilled that Laleh came on top. How appropriate :-)

Would you please give her a big applause? Send an email to lk180@columbia.edu.

Second most votes went to Sadaf Kiani Abbassian. That was no surprise. If you read the letters section, you'd notice she gets more compliments than any writer. And she deserves all the praise. Her delicate writings (with a good dose of melancholy) are irresistible to the Persian palate.

You may not know that Sadaf's first passion -- and profession -- is art. Her first feature in iranian.com was "Solitude" -- a series of beautiful sketches, which perfectly match her writing style. And I still think she made one of the very best covers on iranian.com :-)

Please show your appreciation to Sadaf: gira@mac.com

Siamack Baniameri and Setareh Sabety tied for most third place votes.

You know Siamack, right? The angry Persian guy! The one who makes fun of our most common -- and ridiculous -- Iranian habits and cultural hangups. This guy pulls no punches. If something smells of hypocrisy, backwardness or stupidity, he's going to tell you it stinks -- bee taarof! And he makes me laugh and laugh... Khodaa jad o aabaadesh ro biaamorzeh... If I was going to pick the writers who best represent iranian.com's motto (Nothing is sacred), he'd be way up on the list.

Send your congratulations to Siamack at: mack_baniameri@hotmail.com (and tell him to write more often!)

And finally, Setareh. Can you believe she had to be convinced she's a good writer? Friends and family would tell her she has a great talent for telling stories and that she should start writing. Now look at her. She can't stop writing. And every piece she writes is with such passion, conviction AND common sense that friend and foe never miss it. And let's not forget her groundbreaking and extremely popular Kobra Khanom advice column.

I'll tell you more about Setareh at the iranian.com show on June 1 in Washington DC, where she will be honored in person. But in the meantime, remind her why you love her work Smashadi@aol.com.


Do you know what all these writers have in common? The willingness to express themselves. That's all. None of them are professional writers. None of them got a dime for their contributions. All they did was write about their thoughts and feelings in the best way they could. You can do it too.

Comment for The Iranian letters section
Comment for the writer Laleh Khalili
Comment for the writer Sadaf Kiani Abbassian
Comment for the writer Siamack Baniameri
Comment for the writer Setareh Sabety
Comment for the writer Jahanshah Javid


Laleh Khalili

Sadaf Kiani Abbassian

Siamack Baniameri

Setareh Sabety

All feature writers in iranian.com

By Jahanshah Javid

J. Javid


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