Mandira Pattnaik’s work has received nominations for the Pushcart Prize, Best Microfictions and Best of the Net and appears in Best Small Fictions 2021, Passages North, Watershed Review, Press 53, among others. Her nonfiction prose has found homes in Timber Journal, Hypertext Magazine, Fragmented Voices and others. You can find Mandira on Twitter and on her website. Her piece ‘A Body of Shadows’ can be found in Epoch Issue 4, Transitions.
‘Transitions’ is such an evocative theme, what compelled you to submit for this issue?
Change is universal and transition is continuous. The theme, as you rightly say, is such an evocative one, and had so many possibilities, I was drawn to it right away. Out of all our transitions, ‘growing-up’ is perhaps the most significant. From my memories, this particular incident in my childhood seemed so vital to that growing-up. In transforming to a young person with responsibilities, and the realization of death as a painful but unavoidable part of transitioning, this narrative was important to share.
Do you have a routine for writing? If so, what is it and how has it evolved?
I try to write every day, however little. Though without any set routines or time conformity. It wasn’t like this until about two years ago, but now I am finding so much joy that it has evolved as a necessity in my life.
Do you find that CNF comes easy to you as a writer and/or what is challenging about it?
CNF does not come easy to me. I’m more a writer of fiction and the odd poem. I guess I’m a very introverted person, and find it challenging to share and/or write nonfiction in a creative and interesting way.
What is song is on repeat for you right now?
The Sinhala song “Manike Mage Hithe” by Sri Lankan singer Yohani.