Mariam Karim-Ahlawat is a pedagogue of French Language and Literature, freelance editor, and a writer of fiction for children and adults. She was born in Lucknow and studied at Jawaharlal Nehru University and the Sorbonne in Paris.
Her first novel, My Little Boat, (Penguin India, 2003) was nominated for the IMPAC International Award 2005 and the Hutch Crossword Award. Her second novel, The Street of Mists, was longlisted for the Man Asian Prize 2009. Her play The Betrayal of Selvamarywas shortlisted for the Hindu Metro Plus Playwright Award 2010. Her play, Fractals Search for the Real, was longlisted for the Hindu Metro PlusPlaywright Award 2011. Her children’s musical about street children.
She writes reviews and articles on literature and has contributed short stories to anthologies such as the Siècle 21, (Paris) South Asian Review (University of Pittsburgh) and Our Voice, the PEN International Women Writers Anthology. She published her first book of folk and fairy tales for children under the title Tales Old and New (Harper Collins India, 1994). For over 11 years she wrote a Read Aloud page in Parenting Magazine with her illustrations. She has published a number of children’s books (Tulika Publishers, Chennai) and contributed to anthologies, available in several Indian languages.
Since 2000 she has been writing multimedia design for children in subjects ranging from Science to Animation. She wrote a column on education and social issues for the Times of India. She worked on a project with the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, writing and editing five books for children affected by HIV. These will be distributed free of cost through NGOs working with AIDS and will be mainstreamed through Vitasta Publishers.