Shriya Sekhsaria

Author, actress, archer, social entrepreneur.

Sun Sign


Three things people don’t know about you?

I applied to my college [Princeton University, USA] by mistake and chose it because of a photograph of pumpkins on its website. My first pay-check came from my first piece of commercially published writing that was published as a caption on a t-shirt [I used to design clothes]. I always have a post-it and pen under my pillow, in case I dream of new plot lines or scenes.

What’s your greatest fear?

Living in a socially isolated world

What is your greatest achievement?

During high school, I gave several presentations in schools across Tamil Nadu encouraging study of “endangered languages” and the arts. Thousands of students pledged to conserve their native tongues. Since then, I’ve received various letters from students who became less afraid to pursue their passions in the arts and humanities – they don’t feel as compelled to become doctors or engineers anymore. And a lot of the languages of the area are less endangered!

High point of your life?

Bringing back medals from USA Archery Nationals and giving them to my family in India.

What are your 5 favorite books of all time?

“A Little Princess” by Frances Hodgson Burnett and “Wuthering Heights” by Emily Bronte

One Superpower you wish you had?

Mind reading.

Your epitaph would read? /Last line in your biography would be?

“Life stands here proudly” or “Did it for the story”.

If you had a time machine to take you back to any country and any time period, where would you choose to be for your childhood, adolosent , adult life and silver years?

My latest novel actually deals with this question by bringing together several countries in different time epochs. There’s Ibinia based on Ancient Greece and contemporary Spain. Senechelles based on Seychelles of the late 1990s to early 2000s and Senegal of today. Couture based on Paris of the 1920s, Milan of the 1970s, and New York of today. And Aidni, based on Ancient India and Victorian England. So probably one of those places.

If you could acquire any talent, what would it be?

Alleviating sadness

When and where do you write ?

Whenever I have an idea, wherever I find space the soonest. I do have a writing corner in my bedroom at home; but from boarding school to college to work in the United States, I’m essentially never home.

Silence or music?

Music, always. Silence scares me.

One phrase that you use most often?

All characters speak differently with their own stock phrases, so I don’t think I have a consistently used phrase. But I do tend to describe a lot of reactions by focusing on characters’ eyes.

Do you have a writing ritual / superstition?

If I have to write an intensely sad or romantic scene, I induce extreme amounts of those feelings before I write the scenes.

Do you have one sentence of advice for new writers?

Banish thoughts of perfection at least until editing. [If you wait for your story to become perfect, you’ll never write Page 1. If you want the opening sentence to be perfect, you’ll never reach Page 2…. Essentially, just get everything out and write things on the fly – you can always go back and edit.]

Shriya Sekhsaria, born in Mumbai, India, penned ONE when she was just 15 years old. She has won a myriad of awards at various levels, including a National Writing Competition, and has studied literature online with Stanford and Harvard University. ONE, for Shriya, is a culmination of 7 years' worth of imagination and passion, the publishing of which has been a dream come true. To find out more about her books visit

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