Praise for My Books

"Manreet Sodhi Someshwar is a gifted writer of great promise. I have a gut feeling we have a new star rising in Punjab's literary horizon. She has an excellent command of English and a sly sense of humour."
- Khushwant Singh on The Long Walk Home

"An enjoyable tale of a sassy girl's headlong race up the corporate ladder."
- India Today on Earning the Laundry Stripes

Sunday, 15 November 2009

Singapore Writers Festival 2009 - an update!

The Singapore Writers Festival 2009 was titled UnderCovers. Spread over 9 days, the festival showcased over 100 writers through a variety of programmes: talks, panel discussions, meet-the-author events, film screenings and publishing industry events! I had the pleasure of being invited as a participant and moderator and had a great time interacting with readers, other writers and people from the publishing industry.

The festival venue was the Arts House, a lovely Colonial bungalow that was previously Singapore's Parliament House and is now the country's premier arts and heritage venue. Located beside the Singapore river, and across from Clarke Quay, it is an excellent venue with interesting cafes and bars that line the river - for nibbles and quaffs between events! I took my daughter for a ride down the river when the 'writer's stuff' - as she put it- got to be too much :-)

Flanking the entrance to the Arts House was an enormous collage composed of front covers of books being showcased at the festival.

Now, I couldn't let go of the opportunity to pose beside the cover of my book, The Long Walk Home, could I?

The first event I participated in was titled 'Writing Historical Fiction' and moderated by Elmo Jayawardene who is an ex-airline pilot, a writer and social worker. Elmo is also a wicked wit and has recently completed a book tracing the history of Sri Lanka. I couldn't have asked for a finer moderator than him!

After the talk - Autograph time!

Some writerly schmoozing! With (from l to r)
Jayapriya Vasudevan (of Jacaranda Press), Kiran Khalap, and Shashi Warrier

Kiran Khalap is the author of three books, a travel writer and columnist, and since none of the three pay his bills, he also plays the role of a brand consultant!

Shashi Warrier began his writing career with a
juvenile fiction work The Hidden Continent
(Penguin/Puffin), and he moved on to thrillers
including Night of the Krait and The Orphan.
His latest work is The Homecoming.

Migration and Displacement: New Indian Writing

The event was moderated by Meira Chand and featured three writers: Neel Chowdhury, Rajat Das and myself. The discussion was centered on whether living away from India had helped us gain a better perspective in our narratives set in our hometowns. 

Meira Chand is an Indian-Swiss author of eight novels, including A Far Horizon and her latest, A Different Sky. Neel Chowdhury is the author of The Inheritors and has written for Time and Fortune. Rajat Das is the author of Paper Boat and develops heuristic tools of learning.

Seated (l to r): Meira Chand, myself, Neel Chowdhury

Yours truly!

Interacting with the audience after the event.

I moderated the final event of SCRIPT - an inaugural festival in conjunction with the Singapore Writers Festival 2009. SCRIPT 2009 celebrated writings from the Indian subcontinent in English or in translation. It is the brainchild of the dynamic duo of Jayapriya Vasudevan and Priya Doraswamy of Jacaranda Press, India's leading literary agency with a branch in Singapore

Titled 'Chaos', the panel probed if and how the chaos of the Indian subcontinent aided or detracted from the creative process.

A final photo op with panelists from 'Chaos' and the ladies from Jacaranda! Standing (l to r):
Manreet Sodhi Someshwar, Priya Doraswamy, Shashi Warrier, Elmo Jayawardene, Jayapriya Vasudevan, Mohammed Hanif, Ahmede Hussein

Mohammed Hanif is the author of A Case of Exploding Mangoes. Ahmede Hussein is the author of Blues for Allah.

Well, as they say, all good things must come to an end, and so did this - but what a blast while it lasted!

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