It was an honour to be a part of the 20th Anniversary special issue of Confluence magazine. I had great fun writing this story, When Amrita Shergill met Frida Kahlo. I imagined myself to be a fly on the wall listening in to their conversation.
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A Gelato or Two, published on 14 December 2022 in the Anthology: A Personal History of Home. The Anthology is part of The Oxford Research Centre in Humanities (TORCH).
As part of the personal history of home project, writers and artists worldwide were asked to contribute their own memories and published and unpublished creative work to illustrate the multiple facets of home, across geographical locations and other boundaries.
‘’My mother fell ill in Rome. We put it down to over excitement. We had left India, abandoned the bones and flesh of our familiar world to begin a new life in a country shaped like a boot and it was taking its toll.’’
As an avid reader and writer of short stories, it was a great joy to dream-edit my own personal anthology of short fiction for Jonathan Gibbs’ website of A Personal Anthology.
These twelve stories have marked my journey through life.
Ten Ways the Animals Will Save Us, edited by Gaynor Jones.
A celebratory anthology of flash fiction commemorating Retreat West’s ten year anniversary.
My featured flash fiction is called The President’s Tenth Concubine.
100 Voices Edited by Miranda Roszkowski. March, 2022
An anthology of writing from women across the country on what achievement means for them, and how they’ve come to find their own voice.
It was a privilege to have my piece, The Writer as Mother included in this remarkable book.
The Hitchhiker published in Northern Gravy Issue Two on 9 September, 2021.
This is a story about fathomless sadness, joyous nostalgia and the indomitable will to survive.
‘I was struck most by the sensory details packed into this piece, and how it effectively transports you to different places, times and emotional spaces in such an economical and moving way.’ Nick Jones, Fiction Editor Northern Gravy
Days by the Sea published in The Selkie on 28 June, 2021.
‘Ma wants to end her days by the sea. Away from the city, where people loiter on the streets, gauze bandages wrapped around their noses to block the stench of effluents pouring from factories. Away from dogs, sniffing their way to food among the piles of marigold garlands discarded on the temple steps. Away from the queues of gaunt-boned women outside the government-approved stores, waiting to collect their daily quota of bread, salt, and sugar. It is a world she doesn’t want to belong to anymore.’
Cookery Lessons in Suburbia in included in the anthology In The Kitchen published by Dahlia Publishing Ltd. October 2020. The anthology is available at Dahlia Books.
“Reshma Ruia’s accomplished story is a moving, beautifully written piece in which food symbolises both grief and its management.” Catherine Menon
The Portrait: This story is included in ‘Between the Lines’ Anthology. It was written on the Comma Press Short Story Course facilitated by Sarah Schofield at Hope Mill in Manchester. The group met once a month for six months. Each session involved some critique from peers and the tutor of their own work, a close look at examples of stories from other writers as well as theory and practice of the craft. The anthology is available on Kindle.
The President Comes Home: This was shortlisted for the 2019 Retreat West Flash Fiction Prize. How To Hold An Umbrella is available on Amazon.
The Well-Fed Peacock, a story about peacocks and marriage featured in The Cabinet of Heed journal on 30 June, 2020.
A Gelato or Two published on 23 April in TSS Publishing as Creative Non-Fiction.
‘We had left India, abandoned the bone and flesh of our familiar world to begin a new life in a country shaped like a boot.’
Cooking chicken in Kentucky in the anthology No Good Deed: Short stories raising funds for Indigo Volunteers.
For the evening crowd, a tale of cake and infidelity, Birthday Cake, published in Fictive Dream. 6 October, 2019
The Promise published in the anthology ‘Story Cities A City Guide for the Imagination’. Edited by Rosamund Davies, Cherry Potts, Kam Rehal. Published by Arachne Press. Publication date: June 2019. Pre-order your copy.
The Day After published in the Italian journal Sguar(di)versi. (di) vol. 5 cover – Dickinson. 19 February, 2019
A Collaborative project involving a group of photographers, writers, artists and performers in the comparison and sharing of experiences and works.
A Simple Man from May We Borrow Your Country, The Whole Kahani, Linen Press.
Buy May We Borrow Your Country on Amazon.
The Invite. A married man stands on the cusp of old age still yearning for the lost love of his youth, unable to move forward, marooned forever in the sepia-tinted past that is at once foreign yet familiar.
‘At the hotel that night, Barbara splashes water on my face and says I am an embarrassment. She stands in front of me, naked, the sari a puddle of blue at her feet. I can only stare at her, my limbs heavy as stone. She turns the air conditioning full blast and collapses on the bed, her head drooping against the paisley-patterned headboard. Tears run down her face. ‘Why can’t you love me?’ she says.’
A Birthday Gift. Longlisted for the Leicester Writes Short Story Prize 2018. Leicester Writes Anthology 2018. Dahlia publishing.
‘Dad’s tablets are scattered on the plate, rainbow colours of red, blue and green. Each pill is an arrow pointing to a tired liver, an erratic bladder, an unreliable heart.’
Mrs Pinto Drives to Happiness. The Nottingham Review. Issue 10 winter 2017 – The Nottingham Review.
‘It is only at night when the moon is high in the sky and the roar of traffic dimmed to a purr that she allows the trembling in her bones to ease. She takes off her clothes and peers at herself in the small round mirror that hangs above the sink. Being tall, she has to contort and manoeuvre her body, bending down to see as the mirror slowly offers up small pieces of herself to observe.’
The Lodger. The Mechanics’ Institute Review. Issue 14 Autumn 2017
I write about the editing process of the story in The Mechanics’ Institute Review, Sep 2017 – Refining the Story, by Reshma Ruia. This is the sixth in a series of behind-the-scenes glimpses into the production of The Mechanics’ Institute.
Bank Holiday Weekend. LAKEVIEW International Journal of Literature and Arts
Vol. 5 No.1 February 2017
Ezine Epoque Press: Theme Departures: Story: Soul Sisters. Read Soul Sisters at époque press.
Soul Sisters. Love Across A Broken Map Anthology of short stories Dahlia Publishing. June 2016
Buy Love Across A Broken Map at Dahlia Books.
“In Ruia’s ‘Soul Sister’, the felt realities of everyday life are explored in careful, dense detail. ‘At forty-two’ her protagonist ‘is still surprised by the careless cruelty of the human male’; while her loneliness – as it sloshes about in the endless lukewarm soup of the city – is devastatingly ordinary and true. Likewise, Ruia’s careful description of the disjunct between who we are and who we want to be is vividly realised.” Festival blogger Amy McCauley at the Manchester Literature Festival, 2016
Another Life, Too Asian Not Asian Enough. Fiction from a new generation. Edited by Kavita Bhanot. Tindal Street Press 2011.
Buy Too Asian Not Asian Enough at Amazon.
A caustic tale of abandoned dreams. Another Life focuses on the restlessness of an Asian businessman who visited Manchester as a young man on his way to America – but never left. The story was commissioned and broadcast on BBC Radio 4 March 2012 and Tuesday 16 February 2016.