Juhi Chaturvedi's scripts for Piku, Madras Cafe and Vicky Donor had everyone on high alert and it soon became clear that Juhi was the one to watch in the new brood of up-and-coming scriptwriters.
She got her training in advertising, where, she says, "people around you were constantly coming up with great stuff, and there was always that threatening feeling of 'what if XYZ comes up with a better idea?' Surviving people is the hardest part, not the work." Juhi's been lauded for writing some pretty path-breaking female characters in her storylines, and she reveals "it wasn't a concerted effort, but I always write today's women with a progressive thought process, which may or may not adhere to the prescribed norms of society. For example, Biji in Vicky Donor, who hasn't been schooled beyond the 10th grade, is still okay with Ashima (Yami Gautum) being divorced, or not being able to have a child. To me, that's a true feminist. "There are days, however, where a creative block can give her a case of hysterics. "I've lost sleep and been crazy frustrated, but it's all part of the process." Her writer's notes for beginners are: "Take notes! On everything about your life, surroundings, people, things that bother you—self-awareness is your greatest creative weapon."