by Mantra Roy
Juggling several roles at the same time, including hosting two daily shows on community radio supported by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting in Agra, Roli Sinha graciously spent an hour with me on Skype. In her easygoing and unassuming voice, she shared her journey from a shy eight-year-old poet to a well-respected writer, teacher, popular radio talk-show host, and an active organizer of the Taj Literature Festival.
How did her journey begin?
She was a very shy child for whom writing became a favorite mode of articulation. When she wrote her first poem as an eight-year-old, her father encouraged her, like any parent would do. But writing became a habit for her. She began to publish poems and short stories in her school magazine and local newspapers and publications in Lucknow. She doesn’t remember a time when she did not have a piece of paper and pen within easy reach. She fell in love with the British Romantic poets as a college student and drew inspiration from them in her maturing writing. She still remembers her professors in Loretto Degree College in Lucknow, who taught the works of these poets so meticulously that her current work shows clear influences of them.