What is the relationship between place and character, time and tradition? We were taken by the unique voice in Anniqua Rana’s “The Shrine of Sain Makhianwala,” an excerpt of her forthcoming novel, Wild Boar in the Cane Field, and are excited to perform it on February 24 at the San Jose Museum of Art. This same story will be published in the Noyo River Review in May 2019 and was described by novelist Shanthi Sekaran in this way:
“In ‘The Shrine of Sain Makhianwala,’ we are gifted a world that is vibrant and richly imagined. The narrative voice is tender and patient in its portrayal of how tradition touches modernity, how the ancients sway the imaginations of the young.”
Anniqua lives in California with her husband and two sons. When she’s not working as an educator in the community college system, she visits her family in Pakistan and England. The rest of the time, she reads, cooks, travels, and enjoys mystical music and poetry and does whatever it takes to keep her grounded and happy.
Her story “A Frog Underfoot” earned an honorable mention in the Desi Writers Lounge Short Story Competition. Also an excerpt of her novel, it tells the story of a woman in a village community who finds herself conflicted over whether to accept the fate decided for her or break away, as complex characters act in remarkably unpredictable ways around her.
Anniqua also hosts the WittyBantr podcast, described as “an unstructured weekly podcast about what’s on our minds.” She will be reading “The Shrine of Sain Makhianwala” on Sunday, May 19, at the Gallery Bookshop in Mendocino.
What inspired you to participate in Play On Words?
The connection between the written word and the many interpretations through visual and dramatic interpretations fascinates me. Reading to an audience also takes us back to the origin of storytelling.
Which writers or performers inspire you?
- Elena Ferrante
- Mohsin Hamid
Name a book or performance that fundamentally affected you.
- The Days of Abandonment by Elena Ferante
- The Meursault Investigation by Kamel Daoud
- Sapiens: A Brief History of Mankind by Yuval Harari
We look forward to performing Anniqua’s work at our New Terrains show on February 24, presented in partnership with the San Jose Museum of Art. RSVP on Facebook to get the details.