‘LL: When did you start meditating? And how did it go personal practice to writing and sharing it with the world?
YP: I started meditating back in July of 2012. I started writing because I was surprised that I was actually feeling better, that real healing was possible. I knew I had a lot left to learn but thought it was worthwhile to start sharing via poetry/prose.
LL: Why did you choose to share all this on social media?
YP: I was really inspired by r.m. drake and Rupi Kapur. I saw what they were doing on Instagram and was amazed at how putting your words with an image were a good way to reach people. I knew I wanted to get the message out there and at the time Instagram felt like a good fit.
‘LL: When did you decide to write your book?
YP: The plan was always first to write a book. But I knew that I needed to develop my skills as a writer. I also felt like book publishers would not have been interested in the type of things I liked writing about at the time. I thought if people like what I am writing then institutions will like it too. And that is how it went. A week before I self published Inward the publishing company I am with now reached out about signing me. I went ahead with self-publishing and then I released a revised version of Inward in September 2018.
‘LL: Before you became a writer you were an activist. How did that influence your writing?
YP: I grew up in Boston and at 15 years old , I was part of this organization Boston Youth Organizing Project where [students] would train each other in organizing and then we would plan campaigns to improve our schools and the city of Boston. I learned a lot about how powerful people could be when they come together and realize that they are their own masters. Alot of our collective problems can be improved by people getting to know/heal/love themselves. I took a break from organizing when I was 26 and then turned my focus to cultivating my writing skills. Now I am a full time writer and speaker.