Poonam Mistry and I talked about our first book together – You’re Safe With Me. Ranjith Singh and Mehrdokht Amini discussed their book Nimesh the Adventurer. The panel was chaired by Alice Curry, publisher and co-founder of Lantana Publishing.
The event started with a short intro about our growing up with photos and a little taste of our Indian influence and in Mehrdokht’s case her Iranian upbringing. We also talked about whether we had started writing and drawing at an early stage.
Alice asked us questions about our books – especially about the setting. While You’re Safe with Me is set in an Indian forest, Nimesh the Adventurer is set in a London neighbourhood similar to Southall. We talked about how creating books for western audiences differ from writing for an Indian audience. We also discussed the benefit or hindrance of labels and being known as “Indian” creators, rather than creators who happen to be Indian.
It was wonderful to see so many friends, well-wishers and industry peers and professionals who attended the event. Apart from signing books, we also had the joy of enjoying the art gallery currently on display at Nehru Centre.
Here is a quick preview of some photos…
The highlight of the evening was of course illustrator Sarah McIntyre drawing us as we spoke. You see above the panel in her artwork. And here below is a very accurate picture of me, in my new sari from India.