THIS IS MY STORY.
Hello! I'm Annika and I'm a coffee-loving, work-addicted, laughter-obsessed, wanderlusting girl who often finds (mis)adventures in New York City while on my dreamchasing quest.
Words have been my passion for my entire life. I love the power you can wield, the change you can make and the lives you can better by building stories, offering solidarity and breathing new life into worn souls. Armed with an M.Ed from Penn State and an MPH from GWU, I spend my days as a health communications manager at an Ivy League medical school which combines my love for health and words. And by night, I'm an author and podcast host, hopeful and determined to make the world a more positive and empowered place. I also freelance write about health, particularly women's health - a field I've been curious about since college.
My writing career has thus far been centered around the Indian-American experience, but it won't stay that way for long! My first book, a romance/women's fiction novel, came out in 2015, and now, I have a three book deal for 2021 focused on a fictional group of friends and their travails in love. In 2019, I took it one step further--and now I'm a founding co-host of a podcast called The Woke Desi, a venture aimed at South Asians and discussing issues surrounding our multicultural experiences that are only whispered about in our communities. But outside of South Asian lifestyle, I can't wait to expand out, to create more novels that show the world as it truly is--colorful, different, nuanced and beautiful.
I'm a voracious reader (surprise!). Talk to me about history, all things British, Harry Potter, women's health and empowerment, social justice, food, travel, photography, and Bollywood, and we'll be best friends! As always, reach out with any comments, questions or anything else...I can't wait to hear from you.
Represented by Donaghy Literary Group
Love, Chai, & Other Four-Letter Words
Annika's first manuscript, a light and quiet romance about an Indian college student falling in love with an American charmer, was written in two months during the summer of 2013. After a year of being shelved due to graduate school, it was submitted to agents. Annika landed Stacey Donaghy of the Donaghy Literary Group as her literary agent in July of 2014, and a publishing deal from Curiosity Quills came in November. Released as The Rearranged Life in May of 2015, it received a Reader's Favorite 5-star Review, was mentioned in Kirkus and the Chicago Tribune, and sold Polish language rights.
In 2017, Annika received another publishing deal--this time from renowned publisher Sourcebooks for a series entitled, The Chai Masala Club. The fictional series about a group of friends with Indian backgrounds and their culturally conflicted love stories will be released beginning in 2021. The first book, Love, Chai, and Other Four-Letter Words, will be launched October of 2021.
"Get woke. Stay woke."
Recognizing the void of South Asian voices in the podcasting world, Annika put out a call for co-hosts. Within a month, a team was formed and growing through cross-country flights between New York and San Francisco, 14-hour workdays, weekly meetings, constant text threads and feedback from their audience. Together, the two women--Annika, and marketing strategist and influencer Nehal Tenany--have constructed episodes surrounding issues that remain woefully unspoken about within South Asian communities. Unafraid to broach subjects like trauma, abuse, infertility, mental health, and LGBTQ rights, TWD releases a new episode every Tuesday at midnight on multiple platforms, including Apple Podcasts, Google Play, and Spotify. They have been featured in The Times of India, signed a radio deal with Rukus Avenue Radio (Dash Radio's South Asian subsidiary), and JioSaavn. They have been invited to conduct workshops at Viacom CBS and PodThon, and have served as keynote speakers at Heartfulness You.th 2.0.