With a keen interest in contemporary poetry, Priya Dolma Tamang has been sharing her passion for poetics on various social media platforms, largely on Instagram. Her first book of poetry and prose, Ivory Gleam, was picked for publication by Leadstart Publishers, Mumbai. Priya’s work has been featured in many international journals and magazines, and has received both popular and critical acclaim. Wandering Souls of Sikkim talked with her about her, her book and her future plans.
Here’s the excerpts of our Conversation:
Wandering Souls of Sikkim (WSOS): Why do you write?
Priya Dolma Tamang (PDT): Writing evolved from being a purgative to a source of constant spiritual energy for me. I am not much of a talker, but I can write forever. This is my primary mode of expression, relief and realization.
WSOS: What Inspired you to pen down this book?
PDT: There was no pre-emptive plan to author a book as obscure as I did. I was active as an “Instapoet” for an extended period. That phase was instrumental in bringing the book about. From the support of my readers, to their heart-warming demand of wanting to see my work take a physical existence, I could not help but concede.
I am currently working on my 2nd poetry book, and hope to experiment with other genres in the near future.
WSOS: Do you have any advice for the yet to be published writers reading this?
PDT: There are several nuances in the publishing business which I came to learn with time. Contrary to what we are told, it is possible to make a career out of writing books, but that would take tremendous measures of careful planning and insane enthusiasm. It does not matter at what stage of skill you are, development of literary aptitude is a very real and practical effort. Having said this, I cannot deny that gifted writers with effortless finesse do exist.
WSOS: Would you like to recommend some books that you consider are good reads for our readers?
PDT: Recommendations depend on the genre of interest. Fiction and non-fiction are lighter reads. They are universal meals. Good poetry, however, serves choicest of palates that have inculcated a taste for it. I’d strongly suggest poets like Sir Rabindranath Tagore, Sylvia Plath, Rumi and Kahlil Gibran to spearhead your poetic journey.
WSOS: Do yo have any message for the young minds of Sikkim?
PDT: The plethora of talent in our Sikkimese populace, humbles me. Many youngsters are top-notch creatives and superiorly adroit in their craft. In an ideal world, there would be recognition of this genius beyond the rat race of securing government jobs. But in a situation like ours, where creative knack is relegated to a mere hobby, it depends on our future generation to exploit avenues of doing things differently and successfully. We all have that hidden streak that may work out and pay huge dividends. No two minds are made alike. Please identify your forte and do justice to it.
WSOS: Something about wandering Souls of Sikkim.
PDT: I am thrilled to be keeping track of the numerous thoughtful and progressive initiatives of WSOS. It takes a lot of character and selfless sacrifice to invest as wholeheartedly in betterment of the society. They have made knowledge a priority and are making sure that the children of Sikkim are not deprived of this privilege, no matter to which nook or corner they belong. The venture to uplift, empower and provide a positive platform to students of rural areas, and to engage them in literary activities, is a commendable step towards building a better India and a beautiful world. I have immense respect for the excellent souls behind WSOS, and I pray they succeed in their service of creating an equal future of equal opportunity for every child.
WSOS: Thank You So Much.