Nalini puts Rajith Savanadasa, author of Ruins, in the limelight. The podcast is above and the video is below. Podcasts are also available on iTunes.
Rajith was born in Sri Lanka and now lives in Melbourne. He turned to creative writing in the final year of an engineering degree then completed the Professional Writing and Editing course at RMIT University. He was shortlisted for the Asia-Europe Foundation short story prize in 2013, the Fish Publishing short story prize in 2013, received a Wheeler Centre Hotdesk Fellowship in 2014 and was part of the QWC/Hachette Manuscript Development Program in 2014. RUINS is his debut novel. Rajith is also the founder and primary contributor to Open City Stories, a website documenting the lives of a group of asylum seekers in Melbourne.
Some of my planned interview questions
You’ve just had your debut novel published. Tell us about Ruins.
I expected a story about people who immigrated to Australia; why didn’t you go down that path?
You came to Australia as an adult so, until 2001, you were immersed in a culture that showed people like you in literature and on TV and then you moved. What was it like to no longer see yourself or rarely see yourself in stories?
What effect does equity and representation have?
You’ve started a website that showcases immigrants stories. Tell us about that.
You also write about music.
Who are your favourite writers?