Kiran Kaur Saini writes fiction, plays and film scripts. Her short stories have appeared in Glimmer Train, Pleiades, and other literary journals. Her plays have been produced by Dream Weaver Productions and Theatre Group, Inc. in New York City, and at Le Chat Noir in New Orleans. Among her produced films, “The Lesson,” directed by her sister Indy K. Saini, won best feature at the Miami International Women’s Film Festival.
Kiran has been a quarter-finalist for the Chesterfield Writer’s Film Project, received a Pushcart Prize nomination by Joyce Carol Oates, and was awarded the The Henfield Prize for Fiction. Recently, Kiran received a Writers of the Future Honorable Mention.
She has received fellowships and residencies from the North Carolina Council of the Arts, the Headlands Center for the Arts, and the Djerassi Resident Artists Program.
Kiran served on the 2017 judging panel for the Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Awards for playwrights and screenwriters.
Raised in a small town in Pennsylvania by a dad from Punjab and a mom from North Carolina, Kiran graduated from Smith College with a degree in music (piano performance and composition), and a minor in Russian Literature. She has earned an MFA in fiction writing and a PhD in English and American Literature with an emphasis in drama and film.
In the past, Kiran taught Creative Writing and developmental English for a time at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. Since Hurricane Katrina, Kiran has been a film industry professional and educator in Los Angeles.
Kiran also does a little drawing and painting in ink, watercolor, gouache, and oil. You can follow some of that work on Instagram.