Category : Interviews
Ms. Meena Mishra- Founder and CEO of The Impish Lass Publishing House interviewed Ratnadip Acharya – the famous author of Paradise Lost and Regained and Life is Always Aimless. Here are the excerpts…
- When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
Answer: In my early twenties I started feeling thatI could express myself, my innermost thoughts and those of others in an articulate way. In the beginning, I used to spin a tale and narrate it to my friends, claiming that it was a short story by Guy De Maupassent, O Henry, and the likes. I was afraid if I told them that I devised the story they might not have listened to it. If they loved the story, secretly I felt wonderful within. It strengthened my understanding that I could create an interesting plot. And thus this long dateless journey started.
- How long does it take you to write a book?
Answer:I am assuming here that by a book you mean a full-fledged novel of say, 70 to 80 thousand words. The first draft takes around six months, and then second and third drafts much lesser time, say one month each. If you are into a process of writing a long novel, please don’t forget to rework on it several times. Believe me, every time it will be a better product and the last draft will be so different from the first one.
- What is your work schedule like when you’re writing?
Answer:Once the first work, the
chapters lay-out is done and I have to start writing the book word by word, I
prefer writing early in the morning. Usually I write from 4.30 in the morning
to 7.30 at a stretch. In these three hours Iused to write between 600 and 700
words (sometime 100 words more or less) and I think it is fairly enough.
- Where do you get your information or ideas for your books?
Answer:This is an interesting question. When wind blows it carries several seeds from different trees to a far off land. The seeds settle on a new ground and if any of them find the earth at the new place fertile and conducive to grow, it stars growing fearlessly. The fertile ground in this narration is our mind. So many beautiful ideas that can be a great story are floating around. A fertile mind can easily grab a few of them and help them grow with its loving touch, knowledge and candour.
- When did you write your first book and how old were you?
Answer: The first book I wrote when I was barely 26-year old. It was a collection of 12 short stories, close to 60 thousand words book. I named it Random Thoughts. Most of the stories in the collection were of surprise-ending, a genre of short story that I love the most yet now. Unfortunately, in India short story collections are not published for their discouraging marketability.
- What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
Answer:I have many other hobbies like I constantly learn and perform new street magic, solve Rubik cubes and Rubiks of different shapes, meditate, and if time permits jog for an hour four to five times a week. Apart from that I read lots of books. Earlier it was mostly fiction but now nonfiction elbowed away fiction works.
- What does your family think of your writing?
Answer:I stay with my wife and
son and both are extremely supportive towards my writing. Chiefly my wife,
Sophia, who is an accomplished book editor as well, is my most exacting
critique. If she gives an affirmative nod to my story or novel, well, I heave a
sigh of relief.
- What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?
Answer:Again this is a beautiful question. Scientists say those who are genius use barely 10% of the entire prowess of their brain and we ordinary mortal beings? May be not more than 2 % of our actual ability. Isn’t it? Whenever you get into a creative work, whether it is composing a poem, writing a large novel, creating a painting, through your artwork you reinvent yourself, you get an opportunity to look into yourself and come across many beautiful dimensions within you that you were not aware of hitherto. It is such a rewarding experience. Probably in this process we use a little larger section of our actual potential and fresh life juice rejuvenates our beings.
- How many books have you written? Which is your favourite?
Answer:So far two of my novels published and had been accepted very well by the kind readers. But my favourite one would be the novel that is slated to publish soon. It is historical mystery thriller, based on the least known part of the country. I think the readers will find it a great read.
Do you have any suggestions to help me become a better writer? If so, what are they?
Answer:Please don’t be in a hurry to write a book, please don’t consider that you are well-quipped to write well after reading a few chick-lits. It might have proved helpful to a few authors to shoot to success but it will not repeat every time. Read good novels, books, authors. Read Tagore, Leo Tolstoy, R. K. Narayan, Dickens, Naipaul to name a few. You will certainly have an enriching experience. And then as you sit to write you will naturally form better sentences, will write more articulately. Probably, that age-old proverb by Henry Ford will always remain true.
There is no substitute for hard work.