An Evening with Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni

I promised I would tell you about my exciting event!  You see, the community college I work for sponsored a weekend creative writing seminar, and they asked Chitra to come and do one of the workshops.  This event also kicked off her book tour for Before We Visit the Goddess.  I was not able to attend the seminar, but there was a reception and book reading the night before.  I figured my mom and I would go in and be part of the audience, and I could get my book signed.

When we arrived, though, my co-worker--who helped coordinate the whole thing--grabbed me and took us right over to Chitra, explaining that I am one of the college librarians.  We then had several minutes of happy conversation, as Chitra told us about her love and appreciation for libraries, and we traded stories about our various times studying at Berkeley.  I asked her something I've always wondered about her early book of poems, Leaving Yuba City, and she explained how she got to know that history.  (Yuba City is right down the freeway, and has had an Indian community for over 100 years.)

When the reading started, we got front row seats (because all the rest were already taken).  Chitra read two sections of her new novel and then did a Q&A--of course, she had to answer the Yuba City question again.  Then we stood in line for a while and I got my book signed.  I just had a great evening, and Chitra was so nice--a really lovely person.

This is, admittedly, the world's worst photo.  The flash was turned off, and we were in a yellow-painted room at night, with yellowish lighting, so it turned out awful--my shirt is supposed to be blue.  But who cares?  I'm sitting with one of my favorite authors!!

Here are some of the photos taken for the event.

The audience just before starting

During the reading

Library staffers

My mom and I with Chitra


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