I need to write. I feel restless until I can put my thoughts on paper
Hema Macherla was a finalist in the Richard and Judy novel writing competition with Breeze From the River Manjeera, runner up for the Big Red Read, and received a National Reading Hero award at No10 Downing Street.
Hema was born in the rural village, Atmakur in India. Her love for writing started when, as a child, she watched her mother burning the midnight oil to write. They didn’t have electricity then in Atmakur. With her housework done and her children tucked in bed, her mother would sit by a kerosene lamp and write. Hema says, ‘My mum’s book was not published but her zeal rubbed off on me.’ She is a born storyteller. All her novels are based on true events.
She has published 25 short stories and various articles in Indian magazines. She lives with her husband in London and has two grown up children.
Upon arrival in the UK, Hema spoke little English. She taught herself by reading children’s books from the library and her first novel in a second language, Breeze From The River Manjeera, was a huge challenge – but she was determined to do it. The publication of that first novel opened a whole new world for her with readings, talks, and interviews on radio and television in the UK, USA and India. She has since published two more novels, Blue Eyes and Letters in the Sand and several short stories in English anthologies.
She was the editor of the Ma Telegu magazine from 2010 to 2021, has been teaching creative writing since 2014, and edited the anthology, Other Worlds, a compilation of short stories by her students in 2017.
Hema has scooped French translation rights with Mercure de France for all three of her novels. Her first two are out in French and the third will be published in 2024.