Kolkata is a place that you feel in all of your senses. Visually there’s a lot happening, the traffic is intense, the honking is almost nonstop. It’s hard to have a conversation on the street. The heat is intense. I knew that I wanted to start the essay with how saturated this stretch of the city is, with sounds and heat and so much happening.
With every story, you have to teach the reader how to read it. You have to teach the reader what matters. You have to do all of that without the reader figuring it out, without it feeling too burdensome.
Anu Kumar speaks to managing editor Emily Everett about her essay “The Woman in the Well,” which appears in The Common’s spring issue. Anu talks about the vivid memories from childhood that inspired this essay about ghosts, fear, family dynamics, and violence against women in India.