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“You Can’t Write Until You Read”: Meet Ell P, Featured Author Of The Month April 2017

Posted: April 26, 2017

Do you put off your creative writing because you don’t have a quiet moment? Are you waiting for inspiration to ‘strike’? Ell P tells us why she is seizing every moment to write, rather than wait for elusive inspiration to come coasting along.

With over 1500 women (and men) sharing candid stories, views and experiences here, our editors are picking some of the best contributors each month, as Featured Author of the month. Ell P, otherwise known as Lakshmi Priya is one of our three featured authors for April 2017.

While Ell P writes personal essays as well, her most luminous writing comes through in the form of her short stories – pithy, cleverly woven and often leaving the reader with a sense of having been thrown a googly. You can read Ell P’s work at Women’s Web here.

Authors are often asked this question, but everyone has their own reasons, very personal to them. So, why do you write?

Because I love spinning yarns and love to create a spinning vortex of complex emotions within my readers.

When and how did you first begin writing?

I have been writing for almost as long as I can remember. However, what really transformed me into a passable writer was joining the local writing community, three years ago. I used to think that I was a pretty decent writer, (at least my friends and family told me so), until I first went to one of their writing workshops and realised I had a long, long way to go. Since, then every Saturday, along with 30 something writers, I write for an hour and get better and better by the week.

Do you have a muse?

While I don’t have a muse, however, when it comes to writing fiction (my first love), I love writing horror and humour.
Whenever I write, I ask myself one single question, “If I didn’t know me, would I enjoy reading what I had written?”

Where do you get your ideas from? 

I read a lot, like a lot. And I read everything. From classics to viral content. So my ideas come from everyday things, like Facebook, Instagram, my dog, my son, stand up comedy, The NewYorker and that moron who stole my parking spot.

When it comes to writing on/for/about women, what questions and issues drive you the most?

The fact that I can completely relate to the everyday life and challenges a woman faces, considering I’m a woman too.

Apart from that, I feel a woman’s journey through life is like a study in deep space. It is intricate and complex like a melee of neurons that are webbed to the point of being indecipherable. And my joy is slowly unraveling the mystery of it.

Anything you’d like to tell others who would want to write?

You can’t write until you read. So, read a lot, genres you are not comfortable with, writers you don’t know and weird stuff that happens in places you have never heard of. You don’t have to find a beautiful waterfall in a scenic valley to find inspiration. I am a mother, and I can’t afford to wait for quiet and solace to write. So, I write even with a bunch of kids running around my house, playing Bahubali; I write while waiting for five whistles of the pressure cooker and I write while correcting my son’s homework.

I’ll quote one of my favourite authors, Stephen King, “If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all; read a lot and write a lot.”

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