Padma Viswanathan

Words carried her to destiny

Posted: January 28, 2018 at 1 a.m.

"Her honesty and generosity are so natural and unwavering that she can make people feel great just by being in the room," Lisa Margulis says of friend Padma Viswanathan.
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"Her honesty and generosity are so natural and unwavering that she can make people feel great just by being in the room," Lisa Margulis says of friend Padma Viswanathan.

For someone so gifted in and limber at the art of writing -- she's been a journalist and a playwright, has published works of fiction and nonfiction and has several literary translation projects on the way -- Padma Viswanathan realized her gift relatively late in life, well after she had been out of school for some time. Perhaps part of the reason why was because, as an adolescent in Edmonton, Canada, Viswanathan felt as though she had to hide her considerable intelligence under a bushel basket or risk being branded an "outsider."

Through Others’ Eyes

“I was (and still am) inspired by Padma’s creativity, her passion for writing, her devotion to her family, and her remarkable ability to balance all of these elements in a healthy and fulfilling way. She is also great fun to be with. She is witty, able to laugh at herself, engaged with those causes (political and otherwise) about which she cares, and so sincere.” — Kirstin Erickson

“I don’t really know how Padma always manages to be so serious and so fun at the same time. She’s curious, empathetic, and whip-smart. She’s always dreaming up something fantastic, whether it’s a new forum for intellectual exchange, a volunteer project, or a multifamily dance party. What’s really amazing is that she’s not only the person to dream the thing up, she’s also the person to plan and implement it, and then have a blast participating once it exists out there in the world.” — Lisa Margulis

“When she’s working on a book, she becomes immersed, mentally and emotionally. She works mainly in the mornings, often getting up as early as 5 and writing through lunch. She’s an extremely disciplined writer, and I admire that about her enormously, but she’s equally disciplined about setting aside time for other things, such as fun projects with our kids (learning Latin with our son, dissecting critters with our daughter). — Husband Geoffrey Brock

Next Week:

Suzanne Clark

Fayetteville

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