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Dirty Laundry by N.R. Pillai: A Journey from Spoken Word Poet to Published Author

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Carleton chapter.

N.R. Pillai, otherwise known as Namitha Rathinappillai, is set to officially release her very own chapbook.

As a second-year Carleton student, Pillai is committed to school as well as creating her own pieces of writing.

“It was on my bucket list to write and publish a book,” she said, describing what it felt to let the world know about what was going on behind the scenes in her life.

Pillai said her journey didn’t start too long ago. She dived into the poetry scene at the end of her senior year in high school, and at 19, her success has come within just a few short years.

When talking about her inspiration for this book and the majority of her writing, she noted being both a woman and a person of colour had an immense influence

“It’s definitely a driving force,” she said.

Poems Pillai has included in the chapbook detail many personal experiences in her life.

Photo by @n.r.pillai on Instagram

Because of this, her words had a profound effect on the community that supports her.

“Though you can use similes and metaphors you’re still telling it like it is, you’re still putting yourself out there,” Pillai said. “As personal as it is you don’t realize…as a poet sometimes how much your words can effect people, especially when you think about people that aren’t poets or aren’t into poetry.”

She especially credits the spoken word community for providing her with a platform to openly share her voice.

“This community is one that is very inclusive,” she said. “You get this space where it’s all your own.”

Photo by @spoookyscary on Instagram

Now that Pillai is releasing her chapbook, she’s excited to tell people she’s officially an author.

Maisie Sturrock is a second year law and political science student at Carleton University and serves as the current Treasurer for their Her Campus chapter. She considers herself to be especially passionate about LGBTQ+ issues and community involvement. If she has time to spare, she'll be reading a few dozen murder mystery books or listening to music (practically) religiously.