with Sarika Jaswani:
Q1: When did you start writing and first influences?
Sarika: -I believe writing must do more with listening than it has ever been emphasized. A writer listens to the stories that speak to his/her mind. If I’ve to say when I started writing, then indisputably I will roll back time to my childhood when dad narrated his bed-time stories in his classic commentary style and lulled us to sleep. He has to date been my biggest influences in story writing. I have been a blogger for a while now but since few years I have delved into writing and have few self-published and illustrated children’s stories up my sleeve. Poetry became a tantivy follow. https://spinayarntellatale.wordpress.com
Q2: Who are your biggest influences today?
Sarika: -With a bachelor’s degree in medical field and a Postgraduate Diploma in Clinical and Community Psychology my interest has naturally been inclined towards theoretical/metaphysical studies. My philosophical upbringing has had influence on my choice of reading. I really enjoy Steve Hagen, founder, and head teacher of Zen Center in Minneapolis. Steve’s writing is a marriage of science and spirituality, which I find fascinating. He has been my greatest influence in all ort of my personal story writes that I’ve whipped out on my Blogspot. http://sarikajaswani.blogspot.com
Q3: Where did you grow up and how did that influence your writing/art?
Sarika: My country of origin is India. The plus side of growing in a diverse country is getting enriched in art and knowledge of languages. Born in a country that identifies itself with nativity of 60 different languages and several cultures, I am bound to know five or more languages by default. I might be fluent in writing English, but I speak my mother tongue more fluently. I enjoy listening to Hindi poetry and I understand Gujarati equally well. With being fluent in variety of languages you are gifted with a broader brush stroke to paint an emotive picture and create an evocative art. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B088QNZ8C3/ref=cm_sw_r_other_apa_i_eTAWEb0A3FGKP
Q4: What do you consider the most meaningful work that you’ve done creatively so far?
Doctor by profession. I am a Crochet Artist, Art Tutor Writer of Children’s Stories, Philanthropist. Poet. Published. Passionately reads & writes poetry. Art Lover. Bird lover. Dreamer and blogger.
-‘Tide Rises Tide Falls’
-On Medium with A Cornered Gurl @ACG @Scrittura
-Fever Of Mind Poetry on WordPress
-Silver Birch Press
-a frequent vss prompt writer on twitter.
My poems run on themes of love, reflection, and philosophy of life.
My most meaningful work is non-profit ArtInCrochet
ArtInCrochet is a decade old non-profit, donating hats & scarfs to orphanages & shelter homes. Fundraising since 2016-2020 through sale of handmade crochet items has raised more than $3000 & counting for kids in need.
Donation have been done to:
@ Camphill Village – New York
@ Jars of Clay – Atlanta
@ Knit for Sewa – India
@ Children’s Hospital Atlanta
@ Kids In Need Foundation
@Access Life America
@ Orphanages around Atlanta
@ Hanuman Temple – Atlanta
@ VHPA- Atlanta Chapter
@ Shiv Temple of Atlanta
@ Oklahoma City Health Department
@ American Heart Institute
@ St. Jude Children’s Research Institute
@ Autism Speaks
@ World Food Program
@ Warm Up America
@ Walter Reed Military Medical Center
@ Atlanta Women’s Shelters
@ Lion Brand Hat no Hate Campaign
@ Children’s Miracle Network of Atlanta
@ Focus & Fragile
@ Grenada Alumni
Sarika Jaswani is a certified crochet instructor from American Craft Council. She has conducted classes at Alpharetta Main Branch Library, Art Center Alpharetta & Michael’s Community Classroom Alpharetta Georgia. She has authored Original Children’s Stories for her toy with stories series and are available as nook book on BN.com & Amazon Kindle read.
Funds raised through her teaching crochet art are used to donate books to various underprivileged schools around the world. Etsy page www.etsy.com/shop/ArtInCrochet
Q5: Any pivotal moment when you knew you wanted to be an artist/poet?
Love drives art. It is an ultimate fuel for an artist. Gain and loss, both are the biggest inspiration for a writer/poet. Poetry is the child birthed with labor of emotions that an artist endures. I do believe we all need a way of expressing and reaching out to others. Being a recluse hermit myself, writing always has been a creative and a salubrious way for pronouncing my emotions.
Reading stories to my kids has been an inspiration to write illustrative stories for children. Story telling has been my favorite part of parenting. I have volunteered at schools to make puppet theaters and have phrased stories to go along.
Q6: Favorite activities to relax?
Sarika: I enjoy reading/audible a lot of fiction, non-fiction, poetry, prose. I enjoy watching tv shows, movies. I also enjoy listening to all kinds of music and karaoke. Other than that my day is filled with activities that revolve around my two kids. Charity fundraisers and making crochet inventory for sale are the major highlights of my activities to occupy my planner.
Q7: Any recent or forthcoming projects that you’d like to promote?
Sarika: I am stoked for acceptance of my manuscript by New York based Austin Macauley Publishers.
I am still debating publishing my work, but I definitely am looking forward to writing more inspiring poetry for acceptance and publication in main stream media and establish myself as a poetess.
Q8: What is a favorite line/stanza from a poem of yours or others?
Too Many Names -By Pablo Neruda
This means to say that scarcely
have we landed into life
than we come as if new-born;
let us not fill our mouths
with so many faltering names,
with so many sad formalities,
with so many pompous letters,
with so much of yours and mine,
with so much of signing of papers.
I have a mind to confuse things,
unite them, bring them to birth,
mix them up, undress them,
until the light of the world
has the oneness of the ocean,
a generous, vast wholeness,
a crepitant fragrance.
Q9: Who has helped you most with writing?
Sarika: I love vss365 community on twitter. They are the creme de la creme of kindness. They motivate, inspire and uplift. My best way to stay inspired is to open my twitter app and take in beautiful poetry with a cup of tea each morning😊 https://www.twitter.com/sarikajaswani
Bio: Doctor by profession. I’m a Crochet Artist, Art Tutor Writer of Children’s Stories, Philanthropist. Poet. Published. Passionately reads & writes poetry. Art Lover. Bird lover. Dreamer and blogger.Published on ‘Tide Rises Tide Falls’ & on Medium with A Cornered Gurl @ACG @Scittura
Fevers of the Mind Poetry on WordPress
Silver Birch Press
The Organic Poets
A frequent VSS prompt writer on twitter
My poems run on theme of love, reflection and philosophy of life.
ArtinCrochet on Twitter @sarikajaswani