I have been writing forever and without really confining myself to genre or audience. I had short stories published in magazines when I was barely in my teens. This led to a freelance career writing articles for periodicals – film-star interviews, book reviews, cultural topics and academic journals. Eventually, I decided, it was time to do what I had really wanted to do so since I was a small child – write books.
I am, and always have been, passionate about mythology and fairy tales so that’s where I began. Demons, Gods and Holy Men from Indian Myth and Legend, was the first book I wrote alone. It went down well and I was asked by Hamish Hamilton to write a non-fiction book.. Focus on India,. Then I knew it was time to brave the terror of rejection and try to publish a book for adults. I contacted Virago and suggested compiling an anthology of witch tales. They commissioned me and the rest is history. In the years that followed I wrote three more book for Virago and several children’s books. Then I had an opportunity to become involved in writing a screenplay for Merchant-Ivory and many others followed.
I grew up in both Pakistan and India, drenched in unforgettable colours and sounds and the feeling of being part of an ancient world of history which seemed to continue into my time. Happily all this has influenced my writing.
In my other life I am Jungian analyst. I am married with three step-children and two children, all grown up. I live in London which I love but my favourite writing place is our tiny flat in East Sussex where I can gaze past my screen to the ocean in constant magnificent motion across the road.
- Vikram Seth asked to return $1.7m ‘Suitable Girl’ advance (theweek.co.uk)