Well, We are here with our very first Interview with a Author who has two books under her name ‘The Perfume of Promise’ and ‘Tread Softly’.
What were you like at school?
Were you good at English?
What are your ambitions for your writing career?
-Am very clear about my stand in life and so I have no ambitions. I’m here only for the ride.
Which writers inspire you?
-Almost too many to name. All the good ones. All the ones that have shaped my writing.
So, what have you written?
-The first thing I ever wrote was my very heavy thesis on Aesthetics. It scared me off writing for a good many years. I take credit only for my two published novels: Tread Softly and The Perfume of Promise. I have great hopes of my 3rd still in the process of being published and due in October: Shadow and Soul. I do write a lot of poems and have written a few short stories too.
Where can we buy or see them?
-No clue. Am not very savvy about the marketing side of my books.
What are you working on at the minute?
-I keep writing love stories. Some work out. Some have to be abandoned.
What’s it about?
-The one I am working on currently is a love story too. What makes it unique is that the protagonists come from very disparate financial backgrounds and their understanding of money and social stratification is very varied. That difference becomes so wide that it causes impossible rifts. Can love triumph money? That is the core question I am trying to deal with in this manuscript.
What genre are your books?
-I believe if they must be categorized they belong to easy read, nostalgic romance fiction.
What draws you to this genre?
-Politics, state of the world and over-intellectual bad writing depresses me.
Have you written any other novels in collaboration with other writers?
When did you decide to become a writer?
-I think this was decided for me by the stories I had to tell.
Why do you write?
-Mostly to communicate. Mostly to entertain. A little to educate.
What made you decide to sit down and actually start something?
-It just happened.
Do you write full-time or part-time?
-Full time. Though I am also a full time mom and home maker.
Do you have a special time to write or how is your day structured?
-I sit at my laptop and work as much as I can.
Do you write every day, 5 days a week or as and when?
-All the time I can find.
Do you aim for a set amount of words/pages per day?
-No. I am rebellious by nature and find it mandatory to flout all rules.
Do you write on a typewriter, computer, dictate or longhand?
-Longhand. My first edits are when I type my pages in.
Where do your ideas come from?
-From my observations of relationships around me.
Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just see where an idea takes you?
-I normally let my stories surprise me.
What is the hardest thing about writing?
-Everything, I’d say. Getting published, mostly.
What was the hardest thing about writing your latest book?
-That nagging feeling you aren’t doing your best, that some part of this exquisite story inside you is still eluding words…..
What is the easiest thing about writing?
How long on average does it take you to write a book?
-Between 5 days to 4 months to write. I have been known to edit a book for 2 years, off and on.
Do you ever get writer’s Block?
-Not really. But there are good days and there are days you simply write bad prose.
Any tips on how to get through the dreaded writer’s block?
-Sit down and write.
What are your thoughts on writing a book series.
-Right now I am not too keen on the idea. That might change.
Do you read much and if so who are your favourite authors.
-There are such wonderful authors out there. I hate it that writing takes away time from my reading pursuits. I cheat by reading just 2 chapters and savouring that experience.
For your own reading, do you prefer ebooks or traditional paper/hard back books?
-I can’t do justice to ebooks. I prefer a copy in my hand to feel and read the old fashioned way.
What book/s are you reading at present?
-Currently I am reading a biography eponymously titled Gabriel Garcia Marquez by Gerald Martin.
Do you let the book stew – leave it for a month and then come back to it to edit?
Who edited your book and how did you select him/her?
-I have always been assigned the final editor by the publishers. By myself I have not reached out to an editor. If I could, I would always have noted author and extremely talented editor Shinie Anthony edit for me. Unfortunately, she rarely edits these days.
Tell us about the cover/s and how it/they came about.
-For the cover of my first novel Tread Softly, Rupa Publications allotted noted cover designer Pinaki De. In my opinion, he is the best there is in India and I was tremendously honoured to have him reinterpret my work with a unique graphic of his own. If I could have my way, I would always have Pinaki design, for all my books.
My second cover designer was the hugely experienced Biplab Kundu. I appreciate that he read the story and zeroed in upon its essence such that the very first design worked for all of us.
Do you think that the cover plays an important part in the buying process?
-Yes. Always judge a book by its cover.
Would you or do you use a PR agency?
-No. No paid publicity either.
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
-Groom yourself to be a sensitive thinking individual first.
How can readers discover more about you and you work?
-Read my books!
Thanks Nandita for talking to us. Wish you all the luck in your future endeavors. Wish to touch base with you soon.
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