Episode 66- Reema Zaman

Reema Zaman says this about her work: "Why else do we write or read but to invoke a loving voice in the dark, to alleviate our loneliness, to forge solidarity, to make sense of our inherent, stunning madness?"

Reema was born in Bangladesh, raised in Hawaii and Thailand, and moved to the US to attend college. She has a BA in Women's Studies, a BA in Theater, and a minor in Religion. After graduation, she worked as an actress and model in New York for 8 years. Now, she writes narrative nonfiction, is a life-coach and writes for "Dear Reema," where she responds to letters sent in by readers.

Her first memoir, I Am Yours, is written as though she's speaking to her imaginary best friend from childhood whom she never released. Some know their inner voice as God, a guardian angel, or a long deceased ancestor. Reema knows this as a presence she met when she was 3, a friend named "Love" - Love is her voice in the dark. "I Am Yours" is her story of stubborn perseverance through an unstable childhood, anorexia, disownment, rape, marriage, betrayal, divorce, the acting and modeling industry, racism, sexism, classism and more, with the help of ever loyal Love. 

For Reema, Life has not been simple but it has been full. I Am Yours is an intimate, comprehensive study in identity, loyalty, integrity, and authenticity. Zaman explore her past and present refracting selves: child, daughter, sister, wife, actress, Bangladeshi, immigrant, commodity, artist, woman.

On Dear Reema, the main intention is to serve others. She ceases being the main character and focuses on the reader's journey. Reema sources from her own life to explore similar topics as those found in I Am Yours: our connective, collective trials, childhood wounds, addiction, ambition, body image, sex, dating, love, relationships, self-empowerment, ownership, spirituality, recovery, healing, humility, purpose. For her, writing is service. Writing alchemizes our pain into poetry. Through it all, her mission is to be a conduit of love, a voice for those without one, to inspire and empower others to fill into their truest, boldest, brightest self. Reema believes we are one story and that all we truly need, we hold within.

"Pain, insecurity, trials, anger, confusion, the near-reckless desire to love and be loved deeply, these are our common specialties. Our fault-lines are where our paths intersect, where your shards align with mine. Reasons to never feel less or better than anyone. Reasons to never feel alone. How lovely that being human soothes the ache of being human.”