Shweta Taneja is a bestselling Indian fantasy and science fiction author. Her work is described somewhere between feminist, horrorexperimental and humorous. 

Her novels include Anantya Tantrist mysteries (HarperCollins 2014-2018), Ghost Hunters of Kurseong (Hachette, 2013) and How to Steal a Ghost @ Manipal (Juggernaut Books, 2016). Her latest novel is The Rakta Queen, an Anantya Tantrist mystery (HarperCollins, 2018).

She’s a Charles Wallace India Fellow (2016) and was shortlisted for Best Writer Award in ComicCon India for her graphic novel The Skull Rosary (2013). Her bestselling graphic novel Krishna Defender of Dharma (Campfire, 2012) in a Must-Read for government schools in India. (Wikipedia)

Shweta prolifically voices her passion for Indian, feminist and diverse science fiction and fantasy. In the past, she has spoken at Cartoon Museum London on comic trends and introduced Eurocon to trends in Indian Fantasy. She has also created extraordinary events to make people interact with speculative fiction, which include detective workshops and occult quizzes.

Relaxed after the book launch of The Matsya Curse at British Council

What inspires her

Gulmohar trees with their red blooms, a dead moth, a steaming hot cup of tea, the weathered lips of an old woman, or a crumpled newspaper. Her inspirations come from long walks in nature, morbid movies, passionate discussions on arbitrary questions of life, mythology and its perceptions. 

Her heart thumps to the beats of Ursula Le Guin, Octavia E Butler, Roald Dahl, Lewis Carroll, Isaac Asimov, Terry Pratchett and comics by Neil Gaiman and Alan Moore. Her keyboard, family, husband and muse (who has the uncanny habit of dropping by when she’s sleeping) help her bring myriad stories to life. She still feels its magic.

A column on tantrism in fiction, Shweta wrote for Open magazine.

When she’s not writing novels…

She writes in-depth articles on how consumer technology is shaping the future for Livemint.com, a well-respected business daily in India. She also works on future of internet and open-source software with Cooby, a startup she has co-founded in Switzerland.

She is an avid traveller, collector of folklore and urban legends and pens down travel columns on delectable conspiracy theories and heresy for, among others, Discover India magazine. You can also find her work on Huffington PostScroll.inDailyO.in, and Medium.

Her storytelling passion also makes her a powerful narrative creator. She helps startups and NGOs in their communication needs as a consultant and advisor. (LinkedIn)

A few good media interviews

  • “Shweta Taneja’s latest fantasy novel takes a dig at patriarchy and gender inequality.” – The Hindu
  • ‘Reluctant feminist’ writes a feminist thriller set in a supernatural world” – New Indian Express
  • “A feminist thriller with a kickass, independent and expletive spewing heroine.” – Deccan Chronicle
  • “Adventures of a tantric vigilante” – Mail Today
  • “Book delves into Delhi’s underbelly” – Business Standard

Read more exclusive interviews about her, reviews and media coverage of her books, here.

Take her advice. For free.

For questions on writing, check out this section. She has build her career with the help of a lot of kindness and support of a community of writers, some much senior to her, and is always available to guide, help or generally connect with upcoming authors and writers. If you’re struggling for words, work or looking for worldly advice about writing, the publishing industry or life, reach out to her on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, or Instagram.

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