Ritu Hemnani is a teacher, writer and voice actor who recognizes herself as ethnically Indian, is a British national and calls Hong Kong home. Her short stories and articles have been published in the Asian Literary Review, Reader’s Digest and Expat Living Magazine. Gope and Meera - A Migration Story is her first published children’s book.
As a child, Ritu loved to write letters to her Hong Kong friends from Bradbury Junior School over the hot monsoon summers spent in Mumbai. Her letters described her adventures with her cousins, from rescuing caged sparrows from the crowded markets to innocently hurling red paint ‘missiles’ from their 16th floor apartment window. Ritu also kept a not-so-secret diary of her exciting daily observations and would often present her loved ones with humorous poems.
Ritu was a shy eleven year old when she started at Island School, but was inspired by her English and Drama teacher to develop as both writer on the page and actress on the stage. Her growing confidence in public speaking, debating and the performing arts poured into other aspects of school life and she was soon playing for the school tennis team, winning poetry competitions (including one entry written from the top deck of a moving bus!) and was chosen as Deputy Head Girl.
Ritu completed her degree and postgraduate studies at the University of Exeter as an English and Drama teacher with the aim to inspire and believe in others; in much the same way as was done for her. At university, Ritu also became a DJ on University Radio Exeter, and discovered a unique medium of storytelling through music and campus news. Ritu also entered a poetry competition in the Exeter Gazette that won her a free trip to Paris!
After teaching in England at three amazing schools, Ritu returned to Hong Kong and taught at KGV School where she wrote scripts and directed for the International Schools Theatre Association. Ritu also explored an unexpected style of storytelling through co-hosting and judging the Evening of Music and Dance. Ritu plans to continue sharing her passion for the written word and hopes to write more scripts that allow her students their day in the spotlight!
Ritu is an active member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators and the Women in Publishing Society. When not writing, teaching or voice acting for audio books or educational toys, Ritu is a busy wife and mother to three extraordinary kids who have become her greatest teachers. And before you ask, yes, Ritu is still entering writing competitions and even won herself a generous furniture store voucher earlier this year!