Cheryl SnellWeblog: www.amazon.com/Shivas-Arms-Cheryl-Snell/dp/0615340814/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1270909029&sr=8-1
When I married into a Hindu Brahmin family, I began to write seriously as a way to penetrate the protocol of another culture. My novels, Shiva's Arms and Rescuing Ranu explore South Indian life, particularly the stage referred to as samsara.The term haunted me for awhile— samsara--the sibilance of a word that can connote drowning. I had been reading Indian writers—Lahiri, Desai, Divakaruni-- and was drawn to the stories of immigrant families thrashing in their domestic seas. The plight of characters who straddle two continents, the lives they make here, and the families they leave behind, raised the question: when one belongs to two cultures, which part of a divided self goes, and what stays? It's a recurring question in my work. Besides my novels, I have written eight other books. Most recently, my poetry was chosen by Dorianne Laux for inclusion in the Best of the Net Anthology, and one of my collections of poetry, Prisoner's Dilemma, won the Lopside Press Chapbook Competition. When I'm not writing, I like to cook in the Indian idiom, and I play a mean classical piano.