Debut fiction by women shook up the Indian literary scene in 2019. First-time women writers dominated the literary fiction landscape in India this year. They won prizes, appeared on shortlists, and published thematically daring books challenging patriarchal assumptions and political realities. What´s not to love?
The most remarkable among these fresh voices is the Bengaluru-born Madhuri Vijay, whose first novel, The Far Field, won the JCB Prize for Literature 2019, India’s richest literary prize, and featured on other shortlists. Moving between Bengaluru and Jammu and Kashmir, the novel feels poignant, especially in light of the turmoil that has been unleashed since the Centre effectively revoked Article 370 of the Constitution in August.
The Far Field, as Vijay told Lounge earlier this year, “began from a kernel of rage” against the injustice inflicted by the Indian state on generations of Kashmiris. But the political thrust of the narrative is offset by strong characters. People whose inner lives are scarred and unmoored come vividly alive in her luminous prose. An alumnus of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop in the US, Vijay says her publishing experience as a first-time writer was largely positive, “with a few exceptions”.
Again – what´s not to love? This article is written by
My author’s cabinet. I’m a author, blogger and journalist from Norway. I had my first article in the newspaper at the age of 13, it was about my desire for a better management of the bear and wolf population in Norway. I have since then written articles for several magazines and newspapers, and I also write about travel, restaurants, wine, film- and books, as well as politics, business and self-development on my blog.
But books are my true passion. I swallowed tons of books and cartoons as a little girl and took an early decision to become a writer, but even though my first novel was completed in 1994 – 12 years disappeared in a lot of other fun stuff, including some years in Australia where I worked on a horseranch with 78 horses including my own, crazy Percy that nobody except me could ride, and cattle farm where I was doing a lot of fencing in the “out back” together with a 80 year old man and a dog at the same age – before my first novel came out in 2006.
The Thuth about Lotte-Marie, my first book, sold over 6,000 books in 1st edition. Later I wrote four other books, but it was not before Autumn 2016 that I really took ownership of the authorship of mine – and actually did something about it other than just write and get the books out there.
Today I write books almost full time. In 2017 I started Feather Book Publishing because I want to help others, and I’ve also opened up my blog for other authors so that they can introduce themselves and their books, because, as we know, the Norwegian media is doing a poor job bringing out the diversity and new talents in the art- and literature world.
My blog is therefore today a lot about books, travels and wine. I have been blogging since 2010, and startet a brand new blog in 2015 with figures between 5-9.000 readers a day the first week, so my blog are usually to be found on the blog top in Norway. You can read about my travels right here.
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Trude Helén Hole, author and publisher
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