India is on the cusp of launching into a new era of children’s writing.
I had the privilege of being invited by the head of SCBWI India, writer Jyota Singth Visvanath to launch SCBWI India at the British High Commission Library, Delhi.
Jyoti has been published in the prestigious magazines Highlights and Cricket in the USA, and has had a hugely successful series of non fiction children’s books with sales of 1.5 million books.
I spoke about publishing, writing for kids and young adults with the Sayoni Basu Managing Director of Scholastic India and the dynamic Anita from a significant Indian publisher. There were wonderful Indian authors and illustrators there. Swati Roy Bookseller from EUREKA, The Bookstore for the Young is so enthusiastic about youth literature.
Siddhartha Sarma was in the audience. His YA novel, ‘the grasshopper’s run’ published by Scholastic is a powerful book set in 1944 exposing the imperial Japanese Army’s invasion of British India. It’s a wonderful book, a sign of the talent in Indian youth writing.
There was interested discussion on young adult literature and censorship. While Indian teens were reading Twilight and all sorts of literature, there is difficulty in schools and parents accepting ‘search for identity’ YA literature. I discussed my YA books and opened discussion on ‘The Cave’ and censorship.