~Interviewed by Colleen
Were all the folktales and legends used in your book ones that you grew up hearing? If not, how did you come about them?
“Roshani Chokshi: Ooh, I like this question a lot. So yeah, I grew up with those stories because I have a mixed family at home: my mom is Filipino and my dad is Indian. And so for me, the way that we connected with characters through fairy tales and folk tales and books on world mythology was how I first came in contact with those stories. The folktales that are mentioned in The Star-Touched Queen are kind of part of the nested fairy tales with in Indian epics.”
Which character do you see the most of yourself in whether it’s personality or style?
“Okay, well personality and style. Alright let’s see. Personality-wise, I’m totally the flesh eating demon horse. Style-wise, I mean, frankly the fashion in the book is based off of ancient India and those outfits are things I’ve actually worn to family weddings, so I can relate to the style of all of the women.”
If you could travel anywhere in the world, real or fictional, where would you go and why?
“I love Greek mythology which is why Hades and Persephone was such a big influence on The Star-Touched Queen, so if i could go anywhere it would be the Halls of Sleep. And it’s part of Morpheus’s realm, who is the god of dreams in Greek mythology, and what I loved about the Halls of Sleep is that it’s tucked behind the Halls of Death, and I always liked the idea of sleep and death going hand in hand. I’ve just always wondered what it would look like.”
Did you ever draw scenes from your book or do art in general?
“Once upon a time, I wanted to go to art school, and my dad, who I love very much, legitimately told me “You can’t eat paint”, so that was the end of my art career. But now I draw my characters and doodle things on my pages. Art is a wonderful way to remove yourself from the creative process and see things in a new way.”
Fruits of vegetables? Chocolate or vanilla?
“Okay…vegetables. But specifically one vegetable and it’s called bitter melon, and I don’t know why I love it so much but the way my mom makes it is so fragrant and luscious. And chocolate.”