My Publications


My (very) personal essay “On Skirts and Chopped Noses” is now for public viewing at Voices from the Garage. My writing professor always says to write about humiliating experiences. I wrote this essay after going through one of the most embarrassing moments in my life, but what I went through doesn’t even compare to the story of the woman that I write about.

Right before my plane to Costa Rica took off, I checked my email messages on my phone. I wasn’t really expecting any important emails, but you never know these days. :) Of course to my surprise, the senior editor of Yourtango.com, who had published my very first essay, Zodiac Hijack: Astrology Ended My Relationship, asked me to read it at the 2nd annual NYC LitCrawl. I couldn’t believe it! As I had only minutes before the flight attendant reminded all passengers to put away our devices, I shot a quick email back telling her an enthusiastic YES.

On the day itself, which fell on September 11th, I was calm and didn’t think anything about the reading. That didn’t last long. Soon after I got on the LIRR to go into the city, my heart started racing and my fingers trembled. At this point, I hadn’t even practiced reading my piece loudly. Now I was about to recite it to a room full of eager listeners! To calm myself down, I walked 40 blocks, listened to Shakira (for some confidence) and arrived before everyone else. My lovely friends showed up to support (thank you, guys!!) I was third to go.

While I was nervous earlier, calmness set in once again. I knew this was a big deal. It was my very first reading after all. But I blocked everyone else out, got in the zone and just READ my essay with all my heart. It was A M A Z I N G. What’s even better was that the place was packed and not one single person made fun of me. But then again, who could? :) The best part of it all was seeing my writing professor Susan Shapiro in the audience. She specifically made the trip to see me read. That made the event all that much more special. I made sure I gave her a shout out, because if it weren’t for her, I wouldn’t even be up there.

Afterwards, I attended other readings, chatted with fellow writers and laughed with my friends.  I had one of the best nights of my life. For once, I had forgotten all the pain that preceded the essay. Then again, pain and happiness are very real parts of life.  They have to be experienced fully. There is no way around it. :)

I had so much fun writing my latest NY Resident article on Wilderness Luxury in America’s Great National Parks. My most memorible travel experiences are from my visits to some of these gorgeous parks. My new goal is to visit all the major parklands in this country in the next few years. I think I will start with the Grand Teton National Park….and hopefully stay at Amangani to double the joy! I can’t wait!

On a side note, I am thrilled that my article is featured in the same issue as Matt Czuchry from one of my ALL TIME favorite TV shows The Good Wife. That makes this issue all that much more special.

I hope you enjoy and get to visit one of the parks I talk about. Trust me, you will truly have the best time. :)

Initially I didn’t want to read a book that EVERYONE was reading, but thanks to my dear friend Abby who gave it to me for my 28th birthday, I not only got to read it but also enjoy it a great deal. As an explorer and a spiritual seeker, I was drawn to the travels and trials the author embarks on in the book. I’ve done quite a bit of traveling in my early twenties and in the process depleted my savings. I was rich with experiences, but not monetarily. Sure money is not everything, but in these hard pressing economic times, it is all the more important to save for even rainier days. Thus, I’ve decided to put together a list of things those on a budget (specifically those recovering from a breakup) can do to heal, Eat Pray Love style. You can find the article here on TheFrisky.com.

Just over a month ago, I got my very first essay published online on Yourtango.com. Today, I got to see my name in print for the first time in NY Resident magazine. I had envisioned it so many times in the past six months that it almost seems old news by now, but when I look back a year ago, I was ready to give up on writing because I felt I had nothing valuable to offer. Had I really let myself believe it, I wouldn’t be experiencing the high I am feeling now. As much as I’d like to pat myself on the back for not giving up on my dream, I wouldn’t have been able to do all this without the encouragement of my family, support of my friends and most of all the guidance of my amazing writing mentor, Susan Shapiro. And of course, my dog Indu who’s believed in me even before I did. :)

Lavanya