Every Wednesday, I feature a writer and his/her workspace.  My aim is to get to know fellow writers better through their workspace and writing habits, and have them  share some of their writing wisdom here.

Today, I am most eager to welcome Maria Perry Mohan, author of that fun site Maria’s Book Blog.

Welcome, Maria!


Tell us a little bit about yourself. What do you do for a living? What genre do you love to write? What are some of your hobbies or interests? Do you have a hidden talent?

Reading boook

 Maria Perry Mohan

I’m now officially a housewife, but I’ve actually worked in a multiplicity of jobs during my (admittedly not very long) career.  I was unable to pursue my dream of higher education after completing my schooling and had to do a secretarial course instead.  I was raging about it until I realised that it was arming me with a load of skills to help me to pursue my other dreams – of furthering my education and writing.  I didn’t reach stunning typing and shorthand speeds but the skills of typing and shorthand have been of immense value to me and many situations.  I did office work for twelve years – three years in a freight company where typing was the least of my worries – the only typing there was form-filling.  But it working in that type of environment made me grow up very fast – I went from a convent school atmosphere to a very rough office where blood pressure could go soaring and language was colourful.  Life in the raw, you might say.

Then I landed a job in the Embassy of India in Dublin which changed my life forever.  During my time with the Embassy of India in Dublin, I met Mukesh, an Indian scientist who was living in Ireland at the time for the purpose of  research.  We got married in 1994 and settled down in Lucknow in north India, where we still live.  We have two sons and two daughters.There had just been a plane crash of an Indian jet off the Irish coast so a lot of the work consisted of gathering the names of the unfortunate victims and typing death certificates.  Heartbreaking indeed.  I’d always been fascinated by Indian culture.  At the age of four, I saw a picture in a magazine of a woman in a sari standing in front of the Taj Mahal and I was fascinated by the red ‘bindi’ on her forehead.  Little did I know I’d be wearing one myself one day.  Mind you, only when I wear Indian dress.

In my working life, I’ve done my fair share of blue collar jobs.  I’ve worked as a nursing assistant in a convalescent home which was inhabited by aged people.  I’ve also worked as a cashier and shop assistant in a delicatessen.  I’ve also done voluntary work as a counsellor, an exhibition guide and I’m something of a human rights activist at times, although these days, my activism is somewhat limited to signing petitions and having others do the same.

I’ve also worked as a volunteer tutor with the adult literacy movement when I lived in Dublin.  I’ve completed two thirds of a BA degree in English literature.  It’s my dream to complete it and pursue a Master’s degree.  My choices would be English or history.  I’ve had several short stories published.  One in Ireland and two in India and one in an expat anthology.  I seem to be able to write Indian stories as an Indian, which is unusual.  Then again, I’ve lived here for twenty years.  I’ve written an historical novel – it comes form a Bible story.  I’ve also written a women’s fiction novel.  I plan to edit them extensively before submitting them somewhere for publication.  These days, I edit English novels when I can get the work.  I’ve edited some paranormal work and some Regency historicals.  I particularly enjoy historical fiction.



On Workspace

1.  Where do you do most of your writing?

I work at my writing wherever and whenever.  My bed is probably the usual place, if the truth be known, shame on me!


2.  Where did you get your desk?  How did you go about arranging your work area?

Yes, I do have a desk.  I sometimes even get to work there LOL.


3.  What are some important things on your desk?  Are there specific things you need to have around you as you work?

The laptop, usually.  Nothing more is required.


Maria’s Workspace

4.  What do you love most about your workspace? Do you have any favorite objects on your desk, or things you use often?

If I have some peace and quiet, when I don’t have the demands of my family to see to, then that’s the only thing required for me to work at my writing.  Have time, will write.


5. What’s your writing beverage?  What do you love to drink while you’re writing?

Oh, tea and lots of it.  With cardomam, milk and sugar.

 With ma

Maria with her Mom

On Writing

1. Who is your favorite author?  Who inspired you to write?

I love the work of many different authors.  I’m particularly inspired by Christian author Hallee Bridgeman and British author Sally Quilford.  But they are the only two which spring to mind at the moment.  As a book reviewer, I’m privileged to read many, many authors.  I’ve just read a Regency historical by Australian author Alison Stuart.  I loved it.  She is majorly talented.


2. What’s your typical day as a writer like?  Do you have any writing related rituals or quirks?

Provided I have the time – which isn’t very often – I’ll work till I drop.  I can work for hours, fuelled by tea and it’s not like work at all.  But nowadays, if I get to write for two hours a day out of five days a week, I’m doing well.  Time is always scarce for me, as I’m a mother of three teens and a ten year old.  They are all independent, but they need food and laundry and most of all, attention as in counselling, encouragement, etc.


3.  Do you write every day?  How many hours a day do you spend writing?  What are some of your worst writing distractions?

I suppose I’m at a stage in my life where my family needs me a lot so my time to write is rather limited.  But when my kids were little, there was no time at all.  As some wise person once said, ‘this too shall pass,’ and I suppose as time goes on, I’ll get more time to write.


4. Why do you write?

It satisfies my creative urge and it helps me to make use of all the things I’ve seen and heard in my life.


5. Any writing tips or techniques or words of wisdom you want to share with us?  How about a favorite writing quote?

Yes.  ‘Don’t get it right, get it written.’  If you have something to say, never worry about how imperfect it is.  Write the stuff, for heaven’s sake.   You can always go back in and change it later.




Thanks for giving us a glimpse into your writing life, Maria!

Wednesday Writer’s Workspace is an ongoing series, and if you’re interested in being featured here, simply leave me a message in the comment box, and I’ll be sure to email you.


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23 Responses to “Wednesday Writer’s Workspace Welcomes Maria Perry Mohan”

  1. Hilary says:

    Hi Nutschell and Maria .. what an interesting time you’ve had Maria .. and how fantastic you married an Indian after your early love of Indian life .. and now are happily settled in Lucknow with your 4 kids and Scientist hubby .. and a real tea drinker too .. milk, sugar and cardomam .. Love the picture of you and your mother ..

    Lovely interview – cheers to you both .. Hilary

    • Maria says:

      Hi Hilary, thanks so much for your kind comment. It’s a pleasure to meet you too. Thanks for stopping by and reading the feature.

  2. Hi, Nutschell & Maria,

    Maria has had quite an interesting life. Living in an exotic location must be lovely. It says something about the kind of writer she is to be able to write as if native to it. Well done.

    • Maria says:

      Hi Joy, what a pleasure to get a visit from an author whose work I have so much enjoyed. I’m very happy to see you over here. I’d have thought your native place was just as interesting as India, you know that?

  3. What a splendid interview Maria. How true that it’s not like work at all if you’re doing something you love. You have a def Friday.

  4. How wonderful to be a part of a culture that has always fascinated. I love those beautiful saris, too. They always remind of mystery and romance.

  5. Maria says:

    You’re most welcome to stop by my expat blog in which I write quite a bit about my life in India. Thanks so much for your visit and your kind comment. It’s lovely to make new friends and visit new blogs too.

  6. Maria says:

    Nutschell, you’re a wonderful host. Thanks so much for interviewing me today. You made me look, in my humble opinion, much more interesting than I actually am!

  7. SHIVANI says:

    Author & a Homemaker !! too good a combo

  8. Wonderful! I am so proud of you and you accomplishments Chachi! Keep going! And yes, tea, my ultimate love! 😀 😀

  9. Maria says:

    thats a lovely picture of you and your mother.The man in the backdrop must be the indian servent.

  10. Rummuser says:

    Wow! Congratulations.

  11. TashNz (@TashNz) says:

    Hi Maria. Fab post. Good luck with your writing xxx

  12. Maria – you forgot to tell people you’re an awesome beta reader. It’s great to read more about you and your life. As an author, I’m very appreciative of Maria’s advice. It’s invaluable!

  13. Nas says:

    Lovely reading all about you, Maria! Thanks for the interview, Nutschell!

Your COMMENTS Brighten Up My Writing Days!