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Facing the challenges of coming out as someone dealing with disabilities and pursing a relationship within the confines of strict cultural or religious landscapes, Cosmopolitan: A Novel of Love and Self-Discovery, is the fictionalized story of one man’s journey to build a life on his own terms. Asad Jung was inspired by some of his own life challenges, including dealing with his own disabilities, building a career in the entertainment business, and finding love.
The story of Arslan and Noah is a love story, but it also a story of bravery in the face of potentially life-threatening cultural beliefs and values. As the novel unfolds, Asad also shows how family ties can be strained when cultural clashes with the personal truth of a son, brother, and lover.
No matter what the obstacles these two men faced, their underlying relationship was one based on love, friendship, and their personal truths. The result is a gripping novel with a story that speaks to how our world is changing and how far it still has to go.
“I wrote this book to inspire others to recognize that they have the right to live their best life, without constraints. The challenges of coming out can be even greater when you are dealing with cultural norms that see being gay as unnatural or immoral. When being part of the LGBTQ community is seen as a violation of a family or individual’s honor, then coming out can even be life-threatening,” said Asad Jung, author and filmmaker.
Asad Jung was born and raised in Pakistan, before immigrating to Los Angeles, California. He is a graduate of Loyola Marymount University, where he studied business and mass communication, and UCLA, where he studied film and television. His work in film highlights situations outside of the normal happy endings, including a serial focused on a young single mother raising a deaf child in Pakistan.
During his both his film and writing careers, Asad continues to shine the light on his homeland, including what makes it unique but also the cultural challenges those who are different may face. Growing up with a neurological condition, Asad faced multiple personal challenges in pursuing his dreams, which served as inspiration for Cosmopolitan: An Novel of Love and Self-Discovery.
“I believe that each journey cannot be defined by one personal challenge or another. Sometimes we face multiple challenges as we come to the point in our lives where we can embrace our authentic selves. Cosmopolitan is just the story of one man, but there are thousands of these stories out there. It is our job as writers and filmmakers to share these stories and facilitate understanding among individuals,” said Asad Jung.
Asad Jung currently divides his time between Los Angeles and Pakistan, where he works on both his family business and his production company. Cosmopolitan is his first novel, with more in the works.
Asad Jung was born and raised in Karachi, Pakistan. He went to Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, California. He graduated in the class of 1992, with an honors degree in business, and a minor in mass communication. His creative side took him to UCLA to study film and television.