Interview with Shreyan Laha, author of dystopian fantasy tale “Not Worth Living For”

1. How long have you been writing? What was your first creation and when?

Answer- I started my literary journey in 2009 when I wrote an article for a local English daily, The Telegraph. Ever since that achievement, there was no looking back. I accomplished my first novel, The Adventures Beyond Existence in 2014 which earned me the Rajiv Gandhi Youth Literary Award in Odisha. It was based on a teenage boy named Shlok who found himself in the land of restless spirits called Saptraj.

2. How has writing has made an impact on your life?

Answer- A lot. At first, I used to write because during my B.Com days, I used to find lots of time for leisure which I decided to invest in savings. Gradually life changed and so did the work hours but writing fiction was something which always found time, even during the busiest days. One thing I must tell you and that is, most authors feel a sense of void after they have just commenced with their novel which pushes them forward to find new topics, challenges and other plots. After I had completed writing The Adventures Beyond Existence, I realized that to evolve as a writer, we need to read more and until my next novel, which is “Never Again”, I went through 137 books.

3. Who is your role model and why?

Answer- My parents, which is self-explanatory. The other role models I have are Sun Tzu, the Chinese philosopher and H. G. Wells. I like following the ideals of Sun Tzu because he has outlined the various kinds of people who would be effective and how war strategies can be formed thousands of years ago and his ideals still hold a place of authority. Being a SF author, I admire HG Wells for continuing to weave stellar literary wonders during a phase of tension in late 19th century and bringing out marvels such as “The First Men on the Moon” and “The War of the Worlds”. When it comes to sports, my role model is Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

4. What are your hobbies apart from writing?

Answer- Probably, surfing some educational or informative videos on Youtube and searching for breakthrough research papers. The latest one that I’m reading is about LUCA or Latest Universal Common Ancestor (i.e. an ancestor whose genes we all share)

5. Do you have entire concept well formed in your mind or you invent it while actually penning it down?

Answer- I frame it well before going ahead with my novel. This is because chapter outlines or a draft is a necessary tool which publishers demand before deciding whether your novel would be published or not. A concise chapter outline is always a win-win document for both the author and the publisher. It also gives us a precise outlook on how our novel would come out chapter by chapter. Also, you can come across another plot while writing your novel hence it’s prudent to write a draft every time we come across such plots.

6. What kind of response have you received from readers across the nation about your book? Are you satisfied with it?

Answer- Mild response, although I would prefer more. On the positive side, with more books, I’m earning more readers. I’m satisfied with whatever I get at the end of the day.

7. If not an author, what would have been your profession and why? Or framed otherwise, which profession would you choose except being an author and why?

Answer- Product manager or a relationship manager, because obviously I used to be a relationship manager before I turned to full time content-writing and writing novels. Going back to a typical post-MBA sales job would be nostalgic!

8. What would be your advice to upcoming and budding authors?
Know your plot before you write, create a strong central character in your novel and pitch it better to publishers. Most authors do not know how to pitch a novel to publishers and that is essentially what the publisher wants to know what you are looking for? What are the age-groups you would target and who all will be your readers?

9. In what way do you think your books are making an impact on readers?

Answer- My books are meant for the niche market and not the masses. Hence, expecting a bestseller confirmation isn’t something which I would ideally long for. It opens the Indian readers to new genres which haven’t been tried before or has been tried in a limited manner. My first book, The Adventures Beyond Existence is a paranormal romance. My second book, Never Again is a military thriller while my last one, Not Worth Living For is a science fiction. My future plan is to dedicate as much novels as possible to the genre of science fiction and its subsequent subgenres.

10. Who is the inspiration behind your creation?

Answer- Eoin Colfer and Lee Child, for branding the central character of the novel. That’s the idea behind most successful novels. If you brand the central character of the novel around which the story revolves, you are halfway through the creation of a magnum opus eg. Lee Child’s Jack Reacher. Also, we need to have certain anti-heroes or an equally authoritative antagonist. For maintaining a traditional SF outlook and possibilities, I often resort to H G Wells as well. They are the inspiration for most of my creations.

So, go ahead and grab a copy of his latest novel!


Interview with Bikramjit Sen, author of ‘potentially divine souls’!

Here is the author interview with Bikramjit Sen!

1. How long have you been writing? What was your first creation and when?

Answer- I’ve been writing since long, but not in a full-fledged manner. A full-fledged writing started with the completion of my second year’s final examination in graduation and that was the time I actually intended to write a book. My first creation as a result of this was Twenty Three: Collection of short stories and it was published on 16th December 2017, followed by Potentially Divine Souls and Bouquet: A Collection Of Poems.

2. How has writing made an impact on your life?

Answer- Writing has had a deep influence on me. I regard books very highly and the more I grow old the more I realize the never underestimating worth of good books and other greatly written literary masterpieces. Writing has made me realize what I am truly made for and who I am and has touched many unheard chords within me. It has helped me develop and grow myself as an individual.

3. Who is your role model and why?

Answer- Rabindranath Tagore, and why because, I have felt something very deep, a realization, a very strong connect.

4. What are your hobbies apart from writing?

Answer- Singing, watching films, reading good short books, playing and sometimes being in complete solitude, contemplating.

5. Do you have entire verse well formed in your mind or you invent it while actually penning it down?

Answer- (smiles) I invent it while actually penning it down.

6. What kind of response have you received from readers across the nation about your book? Are you satisfied with it?

Answer- To speak of honestly, a creative personality is never satisfied with her/his works and the reviews received. The day one does so, creativity ends and there is death of a creative mind. Recently, I have been recognized as one of the top 100 Inspiring Indian Author 2018 and has been awarded for the same by the Indian Awaaz at the Circle Club, Kolkata.

7. Which profession would you choose except being an author and why?

Answer- Anything that does not let my creativity die from within with monotonousness and where useless hassles aren’t to be worked.

8. What would be your advice to upcoming and budding authors and poets?

Answer-Read, read, and read other works and receive reviews for your works, and thereafter just write your heart out, betterment is on your way! After all, no matter whatever you write, everyone is not going to appreciate it, but don’t feel demotivated and underestimate your worth for the same. Remember, some birds are too big to be caged in one sitting.

9. In what way do you think your books are making an impact on readers?

Answer- As far as the responses and reviews I’ve received till date is concerned, they indicate that the message I want to give to my readers is loud and clear and has made a positive impact in the lives of many people by making them realize many a things and has helped them grow internally, i.e. from within.

10. Who is the inspiration behind your creation?

Answer- My father.

An engaging dystopian tale, perfect for fantasy lovers!

“Not Worth Living For” by Shreyan Laha is an intriguing, heart-throbbing dystopian tale!

The plot is crafted around Ishita Singh, a normal college girl living a perfectly normal life with her friends, a caring senior and surprisingly a creep who stalks her.
Shweta is another protagonist of the story who wakes up all of a sudden on a stranger planet named Isthenope. As the story unfolds, she finds herself with Alexander on the planet. The conditions on the planet are suitable for a much advanced civilization.
But, among all these lies a dark, chilling secret unknown to Ishita.
Read the novel to uncover the secret, hidden somewhere deep in Shweta’s mind.

The tale is interesting and engaging, narration is smooth, however, I felt the plot was stretched too much unnecessarily. Description was fine and detailed, allowing the readers to savour the fantasy elements thoroughly.
Characterization was done immensely well and each character was strongly developed.
Language was simple, lucid and standardized.

I found the cover unsuitable for the plot. Apart from being designed ineffectively, it seemed to put off my mood before beginning reading. Blurb is consice, short and enough to ignite curiosity in the minds of the readers. Title is justified for the story.

I would like to rate it as 3.7/5.

Overall, a one time, light read, specially recommended to dystopian, fantasy genre lovers!

Author interview with Kevin Missal!

Here are some of the questions answered by best-selling author Kevin Missal.

1. How long have you been writing? What was your first creation and when? Tell us about it.

Ans- I’ve been writing since the age of 12. My first creation was this book called Peter Phoenix, very much inspired from Percy Jackson at the age of 13. It was I guess 30 something thousand word long and it was about this guy who lived in Florida and hunted magical creatures.

2. Who is your role model ?

Ans- Brandon Sanderson is my role model when it comes to writing.

3. Do you have entire concept well formed in your mind or do you invent the plot while actually penning it down?

Ans- I have the overarching plot but the little details is very much improvised.

4. If not an author, what would have been your profession and why? Or framed otherwise, which profession would you choose except being an author and why?

Ans- Filmmaker because I love films.

5. In what way do you think your books are making an impact on readers?

Ans- It’s pure escapism for readers.

Hope you had some fun reading the interview!Satyayoddha-kalki---front

I am Always Here With You!

Bestselling author Himanshu Rai soon to launch his next big Romance title I am Always Here with You with Srishti Publishers
Srishti Publishers & Distributors, one of India’s leading publishing houses for mass-market paperback fiction, has announced the acquisition rights of bestselling author Himanshu Rais forthcoming book called I am Always Here with You. His first book titled My Mute Girlfriend had not just started off impressively in the pre-orders itself, it had also gone on to grab top bestselling positions on all online and offline stores soon after release. While broadening Srishti’s hugely successful portfolio in the contemporary romance category, this collaboration is to mark a trend of a romance story with a difference this time.
A Vanetines Day release in 2018, Himanshu Rais debut romance titled My Mute Girlfriend also got listed among 25 best romance reads of 2018. The list of good reviews, praise and appreciation was endless, as the story was quite different and woven with love, also trendsetting in a way.
Himanshus way of writing is so visually rich that it is more like watching a story. Not just heart-warming, his stories are also different than the usual. We are delighted to be associated with Himanshu for his next venture and are sure it will charm the readers just as much,” said Arup Bose, Publisher, Srishti Publishers.
Himanshus book is most popular with the young in age and young at heart, as it explores the various shades of love.
On his association with Srishti Publishers for the second time, Himanshu said, “I am delighted to work on my next books with Srishti. Being a romance title, no one can give it a better platform than them. I am thankful and obliged to be part of their team.
The title of the upcoming book I am Always Here with You is already trending and much loved.

A gripping and absorbing political drama and thriller!

“Sniper’s Eye” by Mainak Dhar is a political and terrorist drama, fuelled with suspense and thrill.

The plot opens with dinner date of protagonists Aaditya and Zoya. Aaditya witnesses a gunshot and thus begins the saga.

The book is more of a political drama than an absolute thriller. At times, I found, the pace of the book became slow and it dragged.

Narration and description was vivid and gripping. The detailed description heightened my interest in the book. However, I found the sequential organization somewhat distorted. Language was simple and lucid making it an easy read.

I found the cover exciting and attractive. The title is apt and justified. Blurb is concise and crisp, disclosing only the slightest of the essence of the plot.

I would like to rate it as 3.1/5.

Overall, I was a little disappointed with a book as I had too high expectations, hoping it to be a chilling read. Nevertheless, a good read for all book lovers.

A traditional, philosophical, romantic tale!

“Because I love you” by Dr.Pradip Chauhan is a traditional, clichéd romance tale.

The plot is build around protagonists Radha and Kanaji, belonging to Gujarat. The story talks about their pain, sacrifices, hardships, emotions and love.
The author has presented a philosophical angle to the story.

I found the book quite a drag. Being extremely slow paced, it quickly bored me. Moreover, language was extremely simple and easy to grasp. Narration was somewhat better but still required improvement. Characterization was average and readers could experience the lack of depth in character building. Editing also requires improvisation as I could find grammatical errors and punctuation mistakes.

The cover appeared bland and lifeless to me and can certainly be improved. Title was creative and clearly expressed romantic elements of the tale Blurb was well written and gave a hint of storyline to the readers.

Overall, a one time read for hardcore romance lovers!

Two intriguing tales of murder and detection!!

“Vikram Rana Investigates : Tales of Murder and Detection in Hyderabad” by Sharmishtha Shenoy is certain to glue to the readers to the core!

The book consists of two stories, each a perfect amalgamation of suspense, murder, mystery and thrill. The pace is slow in the beginning and intensifies eventually as the readers delve deeper into the maze of lies and deceit.

Language is quite simple and lucid. Characterization is done very well. The protagonist, Vikram Rana’s character has been built well and readers could connect with him quite well. Narration and depiction is done quite vividly with special efforts aimed towards detailing.

Overall, a nice, warm collection of two murder mysteries, brimming with suspense and thrill to keep you guessing till the end.

A tale of suspense, thrill, terrorism and above all, country’s integrity!

“In The Tolerance” by Anurag Raje is a suspenseful tale, weaved with elements of patriotism, political ties, mystery and thrill.

The plot is based on the theme of unity of the nation. Amar, the protagonist, discovers the fact that a terrorist organization, Al-Kharitje is trying to infiltrate the country and divide it. Another protagonist, Intekhab is appointed as a spy from Al-Kharitje and is living in India in disguise. He realizes how this country is far different from his assumptions and teachings of Al-Kharitje.
Eventually, Amar goes on a mission to save India’s integrity with various shocking incidents following. Will he be able to save the country?

Dealing with themes of love for nation,terrorism, nation’s integrity and suspense, this book thrills the readers to the core.

With almost flawless narration and mystery on every page, the author lets the readers only guess what might be coming next. Characterization is done well as characters like Amar and Intekhab leave a mark on readers hearts.

Cover is vibrant yet mediocre. For a tale so powerful, the cover could have been better. Blurb is very well written, urging the readers to delve into the book. Title is apt and justified.

Overall, an intriguing tale of political thrill, mystery and country love!

A deep, moving and heart touching tale of true love and inspiration!

“We Can, We Will, We Must”, a story of love and inspiration to win life when it hits you hard.

It’s a beautiful tale, infused with love, friendship, family values, inspiration and perseverance.

The plot is weaved around Samaira, battered and broken by life who decides to give life another chance. She has lost family, love, friends and relationships.
Vivian on the other hand, is the owner of one of most successful companies, a perfectionist and one who despised failures.
When stars crossed their lives, sparks flew and love bloomed. Despite being poles apart, they were drawn to each other. Vivian helped Samaira overcome the bruises of life. But when Vivian’s past came out, will she hold his back?

An inspiring tale of true love, suffering and hope!

Narration and description is vivid and smooth. Language is artistic and vocabulary is rich. Some grammatical mistakes and editing errors were obvious. Characterization was done quite well, with emotional attachment with protagonists.
The theme was heart-touching with elements of romance, love, hardships and motivation mixed proportionately.

I found the cover somewhat bland and dull. Title is as inspiring as the story. Blurb is detailed and would make the readers want to pick the book.

Overall, an inspiring read!