is a journalist, essayist, and fiction writer. She is a director at
Ethnic Media Services, an organization dedicating to vitalizing the
ethnic media sector with cross-cultural collaborations and projects to
promote inclusive public discourse. She writes an immigration column for
the San Francisco Examiner and contributes to other local and community
publications periodically. Jaya has consistently won awards for her
editorials and essays: SF Press Club Awards: 2014 to 2017 and grants and
fellowships for feature reporting: Tracking Hate, Environmental Health,
Foreclosure crisis. She is the author of "Transactions of Belonging,” a
collection of short stories published in 2014. Jaya is a member of SF
Writers’ Grotto (sfgrotto.org). She holds a position on the board of Narika (narika.org) - addressing domestic violence in the south asian community.
San Francisco Press Club Awards 2018
First Place - "Now and Then column: Memories, Immigration and Assimilation," India Currents (Digital Media, Columns-Features)
Second Place - "Dare to Speak Up?" India Currents (Digital Media, Columns-Features)
Third Place - "In Brown Type column: The politics of
immigration and race," San Francisco Examiner (Newspapers-Daily,
I would recommend this book to any short story lover. The stories
are not straightforward thereby doesn’t take the reader for granted. The
reader is made to think. Imagine. Expand the story in his/her mind. One
of the best short story collections that I have read recently. - Booxoul review - April 16, 2018
"The minute the book reaches your hand you
think about the two eyes, wonder what secret might be lurking in them,
wonder what questions they are raising and wonder why half the face is
When you start reading and finish each story, you
realise why the face is not revealed. The face could be yours or mine,
the story could be his or hers. The 12 stories are very humane and some
of them very disturbing and hauntingly beautiful.”
"This book is a collection of 12 short stories of all
varieties. Though this is her debut, the author easily manages to
imprint in our minds her flair for evoking an epiphany at the end of
every story. With extreme attention to detail, she intricately describes
her scenes and characters that is a trademark of a good author.
Similarly, her acute insights into the workings of the human mind are
clearly evident in her characters and their development. The diversity
in her characters and her narration makes each character different from
one another. The best thing about author Jaya Padhmanabhan’s stories are
the way they end. Most of them are left open for the reader’s to
interpret, similar to her book’s title.
My favorites of these stories are: The Blue Arc that
tells the story of a young sex worker who seeks the path of liberation,
Neiappams – just the character Sankar made me love this story, His Curls
– A story of how a mom sees her son’s growth from innocence to
violence, helplessly, and Curtains Drawn – a somber story on how a
child’s innocence can be destroyed by the thoughtless actions and
ignorance of his parents.
One of the best books from Indian authors that I have
read recently, put this book on your To-Read list without fail.”
Hemant Kumar Jain:
"An interesting set of stories.
Intense, Unpredictable, even Strange at times.
Enjoyed reading them"
� 2013 Jaya
Padmanabhan. All Rights Reserved