Our today’s author in spotlight is Anjana V.Pai. I thank Shreya Chatterjee from All about books for introducing me to her. J
BNI: Tell us something about yourself and your background.
I am a graduate in Arts stream with Economics and Politics, with a post graduate degree in English and a B.Ed in English and history.
I have a post graduate diploma in Journalism and mass media.
Born in a Hindu family there was this staunch belief about destiny; which I have proved by my Novel, that one can work up to improve one’s condition and be more positive about one’s life and improve one’s condition in life.
Also my book is based on feminism. Man and husband can’t treat you like crap.
I grew up in the shackles of conservatism. Therefore I decided to break these shackles and voice my grievance. About the freedom of choice and decision making
BNI: What inspired to write this book?
AP: I was inspired by the book Madame Bovary where Gustave Flaubert explains how naturalism and realism effects the life of Emma, but the author concludes by killing the main character which I don’t approve of, I thing that my character Cynthia is effected by realism and she works her way up to improve her life and problems. She does not believe in dying though she in her most depressed condition did attempt suicide
But did not commit and was saved by her friend who later becomes her lover.
BNI: So what all have you written / published till date.
AP: This is my debut novel. I have a small blog named Orlando, trouble in paradise.
BNI: How did u come up with the title?
AP: The title brings out the enigmatic experiences in my character Cynthia’s life.
BNI: Who is your intended audience and why should they read your book?
AP: My book should be read by all those who think that women should not be feminist. My target audience are young women who are never given the chance to opinionate who are shackled by the chains of a male dominating society.
BNI: Who is your Favourite or least favourite characters what makes them so?
AP: My favourite character is Cynthia who is consistant till the end of the novel to strive, to pick up herself even when she has misfortunes in her life. Least favourite is Cynthia’s mother in law who is for ever a critique never appreciates her daughter in law’s good and virtuous behaviour when she was just married.
BNI: Give us an insight into the main character. What does he or she do that is so special?
AP: My main character is Cynthia who is the fulcrum on which the story hangs. She is attacked by misfortunes for which she is not responsible but with great courage she goes ahead. Undaunted she picks her up and faces a new situation in life she ia special because she survives till the end of the novel.
BNI: What was the hardest and the easiest thing about my latest book release.
AP: This is my first novel and the hardest thing is to make it go around the whole country.
The easiest is to write the novel.
BNI: Share some interesting story about book writing and cover development
AP: Book writing is an amazing journey into the insights of the characters mind set. Sometimes you get into your character.
You are sad when your character is sad you feel romantic when your character is romantic you get emotional moved by the moves of your character. Cover development is my imagination of the times in Cynthia’s life and the hour glass is symbolic to the time both good and bad in Cynthia’s life and the two pictures of girls on each side of the hour glass tells a Cynthia who is full of misfortunes and Cynthia who is victorious.
BNI: Is there a message in your novel that you want your readers to grasp.
AP: Yemosts my readers should never give up no matter how tough life never feel dejected keep your spirits up and working towards winning .
BNI: Any specific plans in relation to this book.
AP: Yes I want to make it into a motion pic since it is a fast moving book.
BNI: A thirty words tagline for your book.
AP: A courageous Cynthia who is like a rock, undaunted she moves ahead without looking behind picking herself up no matter what her problems are. She is a survivor and most consistent of the characters in the book.
BNI: Do you hear from your readers much? What kind of things do they say?
AP: Yes a few readers did get back to me they said that my story was compelling and did have a lot to think about they said that it moved fast and can be converted into a movie.
BNI: When and how did you decide to write decide to become a writer? Do you write full time or part time?
AP: I decided to write at the end of 2009.
I have a small blog to my credit which I kept reinventing.
I write part time.
BNI: Which writers inspire you?
AP: Iris Murdoch and William Golding inspire me.
BNI: What draws you to this genre?
AP: Naturalism or realism as they say in literature, which in other words means destiny, draws my attention to the fact that we can work towards our destiny and improve our situation.
BNI: According to you what is the hardest thing about writing?
AP: According to me the hardest thing about writing is to create a vivid picture in the minds of your readers which if you fail the story remains insipid and tasteless.
BNI: What are your ambitions about your writing career?
AP: I would like to write at least five books, which would include two children’s books.
BNI: What has been your toughest criticism and the best compliments
AP: There has been no tough criticism so far and the best compliment is write more we want to read more.
BNI: What will be your favourite tip to get through the writer’s block?
AP: My tip would be to develop a block and write more and more.
BNI: What are your thoughts on book series. Would you like to have for your latest book?
AP: I am not so interested in book series.
BNI: Any advice to authors budding or established?
AP: Budding Authors should write more. Established Authors should change their genres, which makes them versatile.
BNI: Can you tell us about your challenges in getting your first book published.
AP: Yes my first book did give me a challenge as it was self – published the test is greater about how well it sells.
BNI: What was your favourite chapter to write and why?
AP: My favourite chapter is chapter 20. It was interesting because it was real emotions that were shown picturing the events, which requires the author to get completely involved in the story.
BNI: Did you learn anything about your book what is it?
AP: Yes, I learnt to be patient and enduring like my character Cynthia.
BNI: Any amusing story about marketing this book so far.
AP: Yes, I hired a person for marketing this book, he said that facebook likes will ensure the sales and later after he gets is payment denies that he did not promise me any sales at all – his tricks to get his money.
BNI: What do you think that your protagonist thinks about you?
AP: I think that my protagonist thinks that I am sensible in giving her the main and strong roll.
BNI: How about a snippet from your book that would intrigue and tantalise us
I let out a small cry and felt myself breaking into small pieces with the excitement. We made love for several hours until dusk.
This is from chapter 11 ‘Love in the air ’page 48.
BNI: What are your expectations for your book?
AP: The book has a strong story so it should sell well.
BNI: Do you think book cover has an important role in the sales.
AP: Yes, it does. A good cover will boost the sales.
BNI: According to you what is the top most advantage of self-publishing?
AP: According to me, self-publishing does not have the hassles of the manuscripts being rejected.
BNI: What about e-book, ,pdf. Mobile, kindle, printed and hardcover.Your take on this?
AP: Right now I am not interested in the variations.
Books News India thanks Anjana and Shreya for investing their time in answering the questions.