Nihal Gill and Diya Hituvalli cohost an hour of Indian happiness. They interview the dynamic new author Payal Doshi for her Middle Grade read, Rea and the Blood of the Nectar, the story of 12-year-old Rea Chettri from Darjeeling, India, who goes off on a secret and thrilling quest as she portals into the magical realm of Astranthia to find her missing twin brother Rohan. Payal’s first draft of her book showcased Caucasian characters, locations, and elements. When her writing teacher asked why she hadn’t created Indian protagonists, she realized that South Asian characters are often portrayed in a stereotypical manner or under-represented completely. She pivoted to writing from the culture she knows and loves. The result is the first book in a captivating series for pre-teens. The interview is lively, upbeat, and full of joy. The Gift of Happiness from Cynthia Brian’s book, Be the Star You Are!® 99 gifts for Living, Loving Laughing, and Learning to Make a Difference ends the hour of happiness.
Help each other to be happy.
Never mind if help be small.
Giving a little is far better
Than giving none at all.
BIO: Payal Doshi has a Masters in Creative Writing (Fiction) from The New School, New York. Having lived in India, the UK, and the US, she noticed a lack of Indian protagonists in global children’s fiction and one day wrote the opening paragraph to what would become her first children’s novel. When she isn’t writing or spending time with her family, you can find her nose deep in a book with a cup of coffee or daydreaming of fantasy realms to send her characters off into. She loves the smell of old, yellowed books. Rea and the Blood of the Nectar is the first book in The Chronicles of Astranthia series. She currently lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota. For more information, visit her website, www.payaldoshiauthor.com, or follow her on Instagram @payaldoshiauthor and on Twitter @payaldwrites.
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