Bollywood Dreams is my first real book.
In 2005 I was thrilled to go on a writing retreat to India with Sydney Uni Continuing Education.
We went to Kolkata (Calcutta), Gantok, Kalimpong and Darjeeling.
When I got home I started imagining what it would be like to bring a family from such a different culture to live in Australia.
That’s when these characters started dancing around in my head.
India Singh is my main character. She is a 16 year old girl with a dream squirming and nudging her from the inside.
She loves to dance and her driving passion is to be a Bollywood star.
She has a wonderful gift of being able to lose herself in a swirl of colourful music and rhythm.
Unfortunately, all this ‘cavorting’ and ‘gyrating’ in public presents a threat to her father’s strict Indian values.
I did a lot of research, watched Indian movies and collected Indian friends. I tried to imagine what it must be like for a Sikh family to try to fit into our way of life.
To my surprise and delight, Bollywood Dreams received many good reviews and I was interviewed on SBS radio, community TV and local paper.
I was awarded a ‘Commended Certificate’ for Junior Fiction in the 2009 Society of Women Writers Biennial Book Award.
I was invited to be a judge at the Miss Bollywood Australia Beauty Pageant at Riverside Theatre in Parramatta.
I joined the Children’s Book Council and have done a number of school visits and writing workshops through our Sub Branch.
I started teaching Creative Writing for Teens at Ku-ring-gai Art Centre.
I really enjoyed doing the research for Bollywood Dreams.
I even developed some interesting new skills. Now I can cook dinner, read English sub titles and dance at the same time. Ha!
I hope you enjoy reading Bollywood Dreams.
On page 219 in Bollywood Dreams is a Word Puzzle where you can find the Indian words in the puzzle and circle them.
You can check the meanings of the words here.