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  • 08
    Jan
    Blog
    Written By aditiwriterly
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    Hyderabad and I have a strange relationship, mediated by two very different and equally important parts of my life. It is the city where I won my first literary award, before I had published a single poem, and the city where I have returned full circle with an award for my first book. It has also been the city of 4 eye surgeries (and counting), the city where donated organs are easier to come by, the city with the only doctor I fully trust. At the hospital for a check-up yesterday, before random loitering around the city and heading to the festival inauguration, I gifted a copy of my book to my surgeon, telling him that the poem about corneal

  • 03
    Jan
    News
    Written By aditiwriterly
    Comments /

    The Hindu Businessline just did a lovely piece on contemporary Indian English poetry, and I'm honoured that my work finds space in it: What is most impressive about The Fingers Remember is that it never confuses sentimentality with true-blue emotion. Rao is a seasoned traveller who knows that wide-eyed, unfettered dreamscapes hit home all the better when balanced with strategic infusions of hard-nosed pragmatism. At the end of the poem ‘Not being a man, I bleed like this’, she says, “On the highway, sitting ghoda-taang on the motorcycle/ behind the man I love — no one to notice. Closer/ to the village, side saddle. A woman you can trust/ to educate your daughters. I will live in between.” On the

  • 29
    Dec
    News, Published Writing
    Written By aditiwriterly
    Comments /

    "I read these poems at home, at work, on the metro, even on various DTC buses in the relentless May heat (the subject of a very short poem in this collection, incidentally). Not once did the poet allow my concentration to wander. It feels a little weird to call this a debut book. One reason is that it includes poems that I read for the first time years ago. But the other, more important reason is this: rarely do you come across a debut that is so assured in its style that you think you're reading someone with 20-odd books under their belt." So. A Facebook message I hadn't noticed in my "others" folder just brought this lovely review of

  • 26
    Dec
    Blog
    Written By aditiwriterly
    Comments /

    It happens every once in a while. You decide to get away from work for a few days in the middle of a busy work month, knowing that the next few months will only be busier and you're finally learning to make time for play no matter the work. You surprise yourself by agreeing to go for a holiday with someone you barely know, simply because it feels right, because you're usually the pickiest when it comes to travel companions. You log on to book train tickets and see that there are exactly two confirmed seats available for your journey. The very reasonably priced camp-accomodation you had booked turns out to have made a booking error, so you get upgraded

  • 18
    Dec
    News
    Written By aditiwriterly
    Comments /

    It's finally out and official: "The winner of the Muse India - Satish Verma Young Writer Award 2015 for poetry is Aditi Rao (for The Fingers Remember) for 'the range and variety of her poems, her innovative craft, the solidity of her images and the unflinching fortitude of her unique voice.'" Big thanks to Arpita Das for giving the book a home in the big, wide world. And a special shoutout to Akhil Katyal, my little book's favourite uncle, and my favourite person and poet to share a shortlist with! A little more on the award below, from the press release: "Muse India Young Writer Awards are given to recognise and encourage outstanding literary talent. The awards are given in the categories of

  • 05
    Nov
    Blog
    Written By aditiwriterly
    Comments /

    The news these days is constantly reminding me of my Capstone on totalitarian language. What does the government mean by "manufactured revolt," exactly -- do other revolts fall from the sky, fully formed? What does the RSS mean by "diseased with the secularism-complex" -- when did secular become a horrible slur, and do they know that it is (still, despite their efforts) in our Constitution's preamble? Not to mention the "diseased by" reference to the body politic -- we are used to putting our bodies through painful procedures to protect then from diseases, including removing certain parts of the body altogether for the good of the whole, and the metaphor carries over scarily.  But scariest of all to me personally, what

  • 01
    Oct
    News
    Written By aditiwriterly
    Comments /

    A few months ago, I recorded a few of my poems for a podcast on South Asian Feminisms, curated by Electric Kulture, in conversation with the authors of The Two Brown Girls blog. The podcast has recently gone live; you can have a listen here

  • 23
    Sep
    News
    Written By aditiwriterly
    Comments /

    We have just begun recruitment for Round 2 of our program. If you are between the ages of 15-19, interested in working with a diverse group of teenagers to co-create a social change curriculum, and excited by the arts, we'd love to hear from you. The program will meet every Sunday from 18th October 2015 to 14th February 2016, 12;30 PM to 5:30 PM. For more, have a look at the poster below, or get int ouch through our contact page!

  • 20
    Aug
    Blog
    Written By aditiwriterly
    Comments /

      I'm in a sappy mood, so I'm just going to shout out a few hours in advance to my dearest friend from high school entering the thirties club! Saurabh, do you remember that long-ago birthday when we threw you a little post exam surprise party, and you never figured it out because you'd forgotten it was your birthday? That will always be how I think of you. I cannot believe it has been 15 years. 15 years since we were made "partners" in school, since shared pencils and shared secrets, since tears after bad exam marks, since ICQ and MSN conversations after school, since that phone conversation that turned your ears red and made me swear never to reach

  • 15
    Aug
    Blog, News
    Written By aditiwriterly
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    So, while I was doing my morning chanting on this independence day, I had a thought: What would happen if we chose to celebrate this as "interdependence day"? No, really, it isn't just a play on words. What would happen if Pakistan, Kashmir, and India decided to commemorate interdependence over the 14th and 15th of August (because let's face it, none of us can fully know peace, security, or freedom until we all do -- that's just the reality of our history and our present)? What would that celebration even look like? It seems like such a faraway possibility, and yet, it seems so necessary, so urgent. Therefore commemorating this day by sharing an article I wrote for the "Common

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