Hema Macherla was born in the rural village of Atmakur, Andhrapradesh, India. She has published 25 short stories and a number of articles in Indian magazines. She lives with her husband in London and has two grown up children.
My love for writing started when, as a child, I watched my mother burning the midnight oil to write. We didn’t have electricity then in Atmakur, a small village in India where I was born. With her house work done and her children in bed, my mother would sit and write by the light of a kerosene lamp. Her book was not published but her zeal rubbed off on me.
When I came to the UK to an arranged marriage, I spoke no English. I learnt by reading children’s books from the library. Although I had published 25 short stories in India, my first novel in a second language, Breeze From The River Manjeera, was a huge challenge – but I was determined to do it. Now I have written a second novel, Blue Eyes, and have been commissioned to write two short stories for anthologies.
I need to write. I feel restless unless I can put my thoughts on paper. My publisher, Lynn Michell, says I am a born story teller. Maybe she is right because I draw on stories told to me by my grandmother and other elders in my family.
The publication of Breeze From The River Manjeera opened up a whole new world for me with readings, talks and interviews on radio and television in the UK, USA and India. Life is hectic as I fit my writing into the small spaces between domestic duties and the frequent visits of my three grandchildren.