Meeting Sarada Gray – Hysteria 2015 Judge
Sarada is a professional writer with many short stories, reviews and poems to her name. She regularly performs poetry and is the resident poet at Sound Cafe. At the moment she is involved in organising the local arts festival in Leicester and recently she received a commission from Mslexia magazine to be one of their bloggers
What is one thing that no-one would usually know about you?
I was once on TV drinking my own urine
What did the best review you ever had say about you and your work
My best review said that a story was ‘pitch-perfect’ and ‘beautifully written’.
What did the worst review you ever had say about you and your work?
Worst review said the tone of my piece was awful and it read like a gossip column.
Are the names of your characters important to you?
Names of characters are very important to me. My main character is called Leuka which is a name that just came to me. I didn’t even know it was a name, so I looked it up and the nearest is the Danish name Lueka. So I came up with a plot-line where her father had Danish ancestors and wanted a Danish name, but the vowels got swapped over on the birth certificate and no-one noticed. She has nicknames including lukewarm and leukaemia
Do you have any hints or tips for aspiring writers?
My hints and tips for aspiring writers are, don’t do anything unless it resonates with you; believe in yourself and above all, don’t give up.
I once met Hanif Kureishi and he gave me a good piece of advice when asked question 11 – he told me to start a blog. So I did; that was seven years ago and I have blogged nearly every day since then. At first when I was unpublished it was a way of reaching an audience; it also gave me a discipline of writing something every day. On my blog I branched out from initially writing about my life and art, into book reviews, film and TV reviews, political discussion, philosophy – there is nothing I won’t write about so long as it grabs me.
My blog is at lizardyoga.wordpress.com and my experience with it also got me a commission to write on the Mslexia blog. My husband has recently been suffering from gender dysphoria and so that is the topic for my blog commission. You can read the posts here:
Finding Sarada Gray