Subashree Krishnaswamy (India)

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Subashree Krishnaswamy (R), our AIR artist and Helen Hichaelsen (L), The Host @ ComPeung, May 2013

Tucked well away from even the nearest village, Compeung is a place like none other. Charming accommodation, open spaces, gracious hospitality, sumptuous meals, all make sure that your creative juices brim over.

You never know what to expect in Compeung – a snail in the room, a misty lake, a saintly dog, a sudden downpour, a bird’s midnight warble, a scintillating conversation… Much like writing, really.

The stillness of the place throws even the most commonplace activity or thing into sharp relief. I managed to hone dusty pieces of writing languishing in a forgotten folder. Compeung has made me a more nuanced if not a more aware writer.

June 2013


Subashree Krishnaswamy is an editor, translator, writer and teacher. She edited Indian Review of Books, a review journal, for a number of years. She takes a course on Writing at the Asian College of Journalism, Chennai. She is currently translating Tamil short fiction into English (edited by Tamil writer Dilip Kumar), for which a grant was received from the Central Institute of Indian Languages, Mysore.

Her books include The Babel Guide to South Indian Fiction in English Translation (Boulevard), Short Fiction from South India (OUP) with K.Srilata and The Rapids of a Great River: The Penguin Book of Tamil Poetry with Lakshmi Holmstrom and K Srilata.

She won the BBC Short Story Award in 2005.