Traumatized and maimed by near-fatal stabbing, author Salman Rushdie resumes writing
‘Oh, I’ll let you know,’ award-winning writer says when asked when next book will be done, acknowledges it ‘took a while’ to resume working after assault
Salman Rushdie, the British-American author who narrowly survived an attempt on his life last year by a suspected Islamist radical, has resumed writing following a hiatus because of the assault, he said.
Rushdie, a British national who was born in India to an Indian Kashmiri Muslim family, returned from the United States, where is living, to Britain to be formally invested as a “Companion of Honour” — an exclusive royal accolade whose ranks are capped at 65 members.
Speaking after the ceremony Tuesday at Windsor Castle outside London, the 75-year-old writer said it “took a while,” but that he had resumed working.
Asked when he expects to complete his next book, he said: “Oh, I’ll let you know.”
The award-winning novelist lost sight in one eye after being repeatedly stabbed on stage last August while speaking at an arts center in New York.
Hadi Matar, a 24-year-old Shi’ite Muslim American from New Jersey, was arrested at the scene and is standing trial for attempted murder. Matar has pleaded not guilty.
In February, around the release of his latest novel “Victory City,” the writer said in his first interview since the attack that he had faced a lot of difficulty writing and was suffering from post-traumatic stress.
Wearing glasses with a black lens over his right eye, Rushdie said at Windsor that it was a “great honor” to be recognized for a “lifetime” of work, following his investiture by Princess Anne.
The “Midnight’s Children” author was awarded a British knighthood in 2007.
Rushdie has been the victim of repeated death threats and attempts on his life since the publication of his 1988 novel “The Satanic Verses,” which was declared blasphemous by Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Khomeini, who led the Islamic revolution in Iran ten years earlier. Khomeini had issued a fatwa – a religious edict – calling for Rushdie’s death over that book, which contained passages seen as critical of Islam.