India Lends Itself Well to Fictionalization: Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni

Eminent India-born US author Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni says she writes about India because the country "lends itself to wonderful drama and conflict."

"India lends itself well to fictionalization but ultimately it all depends on the writer's imagination", she says.

Replying to a question, the author, who shifted from Kolkata to the US, says in an interview to the magazine The Equatorial Line that "in a way, immigration (to the US) made me into a writer-- it gave me the need to write in order to make sense of the tremendous changes in my life."

Divakaruni, who has penned books like Mistress of Spices (made into a Hollywood film), Oleander Girl and Sister of My Heart, says she "can't write about a place until I've lived in it a long time. I've lived in Houston for about 12 years and I'm writing about it only now."

According to the writer, her writings don't really reflect her own life. "To some extent, I draw on what I see around me; in other places, I imagine what I write."

She says "strong, complicated women are important" to her work...I hope my books will change some traditional ideas about Indian women."

Emerging story. Watch this space for updates as more details come in
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