One of our new, promising young authors who has dared tackle a real challenge of writing 26 different colour-inspired stories, each about a different topic and with a different voice, is here today to talk about her hopes and work. Enjoy yourselves!
1. When did you first start thinking about yourself as a writer?
Although I have always been a voracious reader, it was not until I started blogging in 2012 that I discovered that I could also paint with words. I’ll always be a blogger first and then a writer, because that is how I have evolved. I am still discovering myself as a writer. The more I write, the more I experiment with words…with genres, the more closer I come to believe myself as a writer.
> 2. What inspired you to write your collection of stories?
The April A to Z challenge (http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com), a monthly blogging challenge where each day you write a post corresponding with every letter of the alphabet from A to Z, gave birth to an idea. I believe life unravels itself in myriad hues; not just in black or white; not just the in between greys, so during A-Z I sought to write a story a day inspired from a different colours.
I never thought of publishing this collection of short stories, but inspired by the gracious comments and feedback from fellow bloggers I decided to give it a go, and thus ’26’ was published.
> 3. Which of the stories is your favourite and why?
This is a tough one, really! Each story is different and unique in its own way; from the tone and style of narrative to the emotion a story tries to explore, the collection invites the reader to look at life from a distinct perspective. ‘Grey Powder’ explores the ill effects of drug abuse, ‘Jade Mandarin Ducks’ the love and redemption of a married couple, ‘Ecru’ the life and times of a rural household – my favourite would be amongst these.
> 4. Do you get writer’s block? How do you pull yourself out?
It is true that the more you write, make a habit to write daily, the less concerned you are about the writer’s block. I say this out of experience. April 2014 saw me writing a story a day. Though I had a theme in mind and the colours chosen, each story was crafted in a day. I scribbled on the way to work, in office, while eating and the final touch was put in late at night. The ‘block’ tried to creep in but I was able to push it aside and concentrate on writing.
Unfortunately, the lesson that the one month taught me wasn’t practiced after that. Blame it on mismanagement of time and work-life schedules, ‘ writers block’ became a part and parcel of my life! 😦
What helps me get back to my feet is writing prompts provided by blogging support groups (https://blogarhythmblog.wordpress.com/), free writing and dancing.
> 5. What do your friends and family think about you as a writer?
I turn to my family for both support and honest criticism. They will shower me with praises on a great write but will also bluntly point out a miss. But overall they think of me as pretty cool to be pursuing this passion. (Or at least I think so 😉 )
> 6. Which story was the most difficult for you to write?
I struggled with the story ‘ The Tangerine dream’ I don’t want to reveal much, but even though I wanted to end it on a positive note I couldn’t. Sadly in India, as well as in some parts of the country, the girl has to make a lot of uncalled sacrifices and her life is modeled not by her choices but by others.
Many of my stories subtly question the social structure of our society.
> 7. Would you like to try writing in a different genre? Which and why?
Historical fiction and romance. My current project is a bit of both! 🙂
> 8. What was the most interesting comment you got for your stories?
The most insightful comment was from you dear Anita. You envisioned a future for my stories, saw me collaborating with an artist where our works could be seen at an art exhibition. I will surely be considering this! Thank you! 🙂
> 9. What is the one genre you think you would never write?
Never say never; but anything to do with politics skips my interest, so maybe that!
> 10. If you did a public reading, which particular story would you choose, expecting it to cause a fruitful debate?
‘Fuchsia Fetish’ explores the confusions and frustrations of a transgender. In choosing this story, my hope is that people become more open, less judgmental and accept people as equal even if they do not conform to the conventional notions of male or female gender roles.
> 11. Would you like to add anything about your current work or send a message to the readers?
Well, not particular to my current work.
Just that encourage the work of writers. Buy, read and review. This is the biggest reward for us. 🙂