You’ve probably heard that introduction before—if not from me, then one of a generation of other girls named after Aishwarya Rai in that 1993 Pepsi ad. Seriously, there are so many of us that it was called the Sanjana Effect: what Rai did to ‘90s India and its daughters. Her beauty, success, and elusive mix of modernity and tradition could be ours, our parents hoped, if we were given her name from a cola ad.
This, and other uniquely Indian aspirations, are the subjects of some of my widely-read essays, which appear in The Caravan, ThePrint, VICE, Fifty Two, New Lines Mag, Rest of World, and other Indian and international publications. But enough with that endless praise, more of which can be found here.
What you want to know now is about that book of mine. Since it’s about how crazy life is in modern India—or in any society saddled with heaps of inequality and a small but powerful population that has no clue what to do about it—the book will probably speak to you. It is a collection of narrative nonfiction essays that build on my drip, and was part of the South Asia Speaks fellowship for outstanding emerging writers. The book was repped by Kanishka Gupta, and will be published by Aleph Book Company in 2024.
My Twitter, Instagram, Substack,—even LinkedIn—are the best ways to stay hooked to what’s up. Really: it’s the closest you’re going to get to me. You’ll encounter parody videos, incisive explorations, and strange lands that go beyond the book’s themes while staying true to them… Follow. Subscribe.
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MORE ABOUT ME
If you can’t wait until the book is out, here are some excruciating details to keep you occupied. (There’s no other way to talk about achievement anymore.)