Know the writer

1. When did you start writing and what inspired you to write?

I started writing in September 2018. I was going through a personal crisis at that time, which was impacting my mental health. A close friend of mine, who knew what I was experiencing, encouraged me to try writing as catharsis. I am so glad I did!

2. Which books influenced much of your writing?

I like reading books by authors who are genuine, who speak from their personal experiences. Authors that I love are:

a)  Chimamanda Adichie (all of her books, especially Half of a Yellow Sun and That Thing Around Your Neck)
b) Khaled Hosseini’s A Thousand Splendid Suns and The Kite-Runner
c) The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
d) Jhumpa Lahiri’s The Namesake and Unaccustomed Earth
e) All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

I am also a huge fan of the Harry Potter and Hunger Games series. I love books which have strong women characters as an integral part of the story. I occasionally enjoy vampire novels (the true horror kind, not the sappy romantic ones) when I want to give myself a fright!

3. What do you think about Penmancy?

I love it! I love the contests, learning of new words, and the genuine feedback provided by Rham, Kajal, and other authors. I feel my writing has improved so much, and I am able to think about how can I make more of an impact in a few words. Kajal and Rham are incredibly hardworking and creative. Hats off to both of you!

4. Which Penmancy writers you like and why?

a) Natasha Sequeira- her poetry skills are unmatched! I have no idea how she does it.
b) Sparsh Verma- his writings are raw, full of emotions.
c) Piya/Bhavna Gajbe- that woman has an imagination like no other. She has an incredibly busy schedule but she still pulls of masterpieces!

4. What advice you can give to fellow beginning writers in the community?

Participate in the exercises, whether it is writing 4-line poems or writing a few lines for ‘Show Don’t Tell.’ It helps sharpen your writing for the actual contests. Also, read others’ writings and give your honest feedback. It may feel like you don’t have a right to do that as an amateur writer, but it is through this process of writing how I felt about others’ stories that I got to learn how to refine my own.

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