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A Handbook for my Lover

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Writer, Rosalyn D'Mello:

Where does a relationship between a 20-something and a 50-something go? When it’s shared between an ardent art writer and a notable photographer, it gets etched forever in erotica. Palpable with passion, Rosalyn D’Mello’s debut book, A Handbook for my Lover, rips apart albeit lyrically the love affair between the author and her much older partner. Chapter by chapter, she strips the many layers of such a complex love, until it comes completely bare, warts and all. In the intense insight, Rosalyn takes the reader through the many years of their love that cannot conform to a societal arrangement and appears to have no destination. And yet, hers is a story that rejoices in finding eternity in ephemera. 'It wasn’t easy to put all that vulnerability to word,' she says.

How did your journey in writing begin? Did your childhood have a role to play?
It began with soppy poems, my first dedicated to my mother. Eventually I began keeping a journal. I fell in love with poetry and when I was 17, started attending meetings of the Poetry Circle in Bombay. Because of my dark skin I think I always felt like a bit of an outcast, writing felt like a site of refuge, where I could empty out what I imagined to be my soul.

When did you first think of writing A Handbook For My Lover?
In 2008, soon after I met the person to whom the book is dedicated. It started out as an attempt to write him letters about my past. It then took on the scope and span of a book.

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