Today I’m sharing my interview with author Meera Sriram, who I met in our debut group in 2019. Her book THE YELLOW SUITCASE, illustrated by Meera Sethi shared a heartfelt story of traveling to India after losing a grandmother. Since then, she’s had three more picture books released and today we’ll be celebrating and learning more about her recent release, DUMPLING DAY, illustrated by Inés de Antuñano, with recipes by Laurel P. Jackson. Yes, there are recipes! Books and food are a wonderful combination, if you ask me.
Meera is offering one lucky winner (US ONLY) a copy of DUMPLING DAY and all you have to do to enter is comment on this blogpost. Sharing on social media is also appreciated.
What were you like at the age of your target audience?
I grew up in Chennai in southern India. School was a huge part of my life when I was a kid. I was excited about learning and enjoyed several extra-curricular activities. At home, I spent a lot of time on my own, mostly playing on our sunny terrace. I remember spending hours looking out at the very busy street and daydreaming or people-watching. I liked to read, draw, and dance. And I also loved playing all kinds of indoor and outdoor games with family and friends.
What inspires you?
The qualities of childhood: wonder, innocence, curiosity, imagination and resilience. Children are hope. They teach and inspire me in countless ways every day. For my own writing, I try not to underestimate their capacity in learning and processing, what we tend to believe as difficult information, themes, or topics. Because of this I’m mostly inspired to tell stories that include experiences, places, and people we often don’t talk about in books.
What’s one thing you hope readers take away from your books?
No matter where we come from or currently live, how we look and dress, what we eat and speak, we are all more similar than different. As humans sharing one gigantic home, we also share similar experiences and the same spectrum of emotions. There’s much to appreciate and celebrate in each other than use what differentiates us to hurt ourselves. I aspire for my stories to open up the world and for ALL kids to see themselves in the stories they read.
What’s next for you?
I have a board book and two picture books coming out in the next couple of years. One of them is A GARDEN IN MY HANDS, illustrated by Sandhya Prabhat that comes out from Knopf / Penguin Random House in Spring 2023. The art is absolutely adorable and gorgeous at the same time. While I’m out on submission with a project that I’ve been working really hard on, I’m also in the middle of revising a bunch of picture book manuscripts. I can’t wait to go back to visiting kids inside classrooms and doing my weekly story-time at the library!
To connect with Meera and learn more about her books:
TWITTER: @meeraTsriram FACEBOOK: @AuthorMeeraSriram
INSTAGRAM: @meera.sriram WEBSITE: http://www.meerasriram.com