Hello Anupama, welcome to Incredible Women Of India, Thank you for being a part of Incredible Women Writers of India, Monsoon Edition, 2015 and sharing your journey as a writer with us.
First of all tell us something about your growing up years, your school and college days, and your family.
I have had a typical South Indian middle class upbringing wherein acquiring a professional degree was paramount. Schooling and college was spent in doing just that. My father made sure we read all sorts of books and magazines. My mother took care of the linguistics. My younger brother completed the picture. I have a son and a daughter. I currently stay in the NCR region with my husband.
What makes you, You?
I guess it has to do with my blood group – A+ – I usually try to be positive because there is always light at the end of a dark tunnel. Sometimes you take a right turn and end up writing history! And the road not taken, it was well left!
How did your journey as a writer/poet begin?
I am an accidental late entrant to the enigmatic world of writing. In late 2012, I was diagnosed with TB of glands. I couldn’t do much with life; therefore I invested in a smartphone and started exploring the cyber world. I started contributing to various online forums and discovered the aphrodisiac power of likes. I then let loose on the poor unsuspecting public at large. In 2013, I started writing short stories. In 2014 Readomania happened and I have been able to contribute to 3 of their Short story Anthologies, so far.
What are your inspirations? Who is your muse, if any at all?
Life with it’s never ending twists and turns are the biggest inspiration of all. Every day incidents, children, anything random could be a muse.
Why do you write?
There is so much happening around us. They create a buzz in my head, giving rise to various interpretations. When I put these thoughts to verse and paraphrase them, it is like a closure. Brings peace to me and family, in that order
What made you decide to sit down and actually start something?
When my first story got accepted and a publisher was willing to put his hard earned money on it, I decided to get a bit serious. Hopefully it will stay long and may I receive many such glad tidings in the future!
Do you write full-time or part-time? Do you have a special time to write or how is your day structured? Do you write every day, 5 days a week or as and when?
The ideas are there constantly and an inspiration could strike anywhere. One must read, trawl, and update skills, 24/7. I typically jot down on my phone, an outline. I usually write in the mornings or late nights.
What is the hardest thing about writing? What is the easiest thing about writing? Any writing rituals?
I cannot write long stories. To drag a story beyond 2000 words is torturous for me. I like writing short snippets. These days I am toying with 2 line tales. #2LineTales the easiest thing is to write on but the hardest thing is make sure it is appealing.
Confession: Once I wrote Florence Nightingale was a very promiscuous lady. Immediately I was presented with Norman Lewis & Wilfred Funk!!
Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just see where an idea takes you? Have you ever hated something you wrote?
First always the plot, then a skeletal draft. Add in the muscle and season it with the right amount of fat. Lot of blood and sweat goes into creating a readable work. At the end of it all, you and others could end up hating what you generated.
Do you ever get writer’s Block? And how do you get over it?
Many a time! I go for walks with the earphones on or go watch a movie. I go back to the roots, to the drawing board with smaller agenda and try to stick to the time tested rules.
How do you think you’ve evolved creatively?
Hopefully yes. Though it’s presumptuous of me to comment, it’s for others to judge.
What are you working on at the minute?
Do you read much and if so who are your favourite authors and poets / what are your favourite books?
I read on and off. Favorite authors – they keep changing – Mostly I read material from the internet, to keep abreast of the various lingual styles and trending topics.
What do you think is the future of reading/writing in India?
It could very well turn out to be the golden period of Indian writing. It is already on the upswing, as more and more young writers emerge from various parts India, bringing with them, their native flavours and assiduously mixing it with their narratives, to produce a melting potpourri.
What are your other passions apart from writing?
I love to try out new recipes and paint a bit.
What is your message for the readers of our blogazine?
I haven’t yet arrived at a station in life where I could give a message to others. But I could share my life’s mantra. Make happiness a recurring habit. Always keep it simple and stick to the basics. Keep at the smaller pieces of the puzzle, the larger picture takes care of itself
Excerpts from Anupama’s Work
As a fledgling, I have prodded and pushed you to fly
Then why do I despair and rejoice, as you soar sky high??
“Thank God for these unseasonal showers”, I mull as I sip hot my coffee, “They will push the harsh summer away!”
In Mathura, a farmer has just made a suicide pact with God, in his wet, washed-out, ready-to-reap-wheat field, as his hungry children wail…
It was the pitter patter sound of steady water drops, on her glass window, that woke Simran up.
The rain seemed to come down in sheets. Everything was wet, washed and the leaves actually looked fresh and green.
This particular shade of green was something she had seen, way back in time, when she was carefree, young and in love.
A time when Simran used to hop onto a local to lonavala, to trek the Western Ghats and the incessant rain would caress her curves and the mesmerizing green would intoxicate her.
Her Raj would share hot cups of masala chai with his Simran as they bundled together, quivering and shivering.
Simran Verma stole a glance towards Raj Verma, snoring away, utterly unmindful of the beauty of nature, dancing right in front of him, and sighed wistfully.
Her mobile sprang to life. ” MemSaab, Not coming for work today. Its raining cats and dogs”.
The phone was disconnected even before Simran could utter a word.
“Oh these bloody bloody *&^%* rains!!”
Right to read
Two brothers, when their father wanted them to graze their cattle,
challenged each other to many a math science muddle,
winner stayed at home to read, loser did the domestic drivel,
They were born way down the societal ladder, a pity
No electricity, No water, No assimilation into the society,
Just a burning desire to read and a God given acuity
Against all odds, they kept proving their mettle,
Junior school a breeze, finished senior school in fine fettle
Read and raced against the best, to be engineers, a feat no little
They yearned to read and rewrote their destiny
It’s time we as a nation had an epiphany
Right to Read, unearths such gems from this sea of humanity
Right to read gives those less privileged, a shot, a whiff of an equal opportunity..
To know more about this INCREDIBLE WOMAN follow the link
Read more of her work at http://www.readomania.com
Please note that this interview was conducted online, via emails.
Interview conducted for Incredible Women of India : Rhiti Bose