I came into this world 45 years ago in India, and nine schools, six cities and five countries later find myself back in India after almost 15 years abroad. A cubicle dweller by day and writer by night, I spend my time with my wonderful wife, Puja, our son Aaditya and my trusty laptop.
INSPIRATIONS AND INFLUENCES
Mine is not a special story- we all have stories of our own. But as a writer, the experiences one goes through do end up shaping what one reveals of oneself to the world through one's words. Looking back, a big influence on me has been my largely nomadic childhood, where adjusting to new places and friends every couple of years both made me rely on my imagination and also first stoked my love for writing.
My father, Maloy, was someone I admired for keeping his own love of writing alive, so that even after a hiatus of more than thirty years, he published his first book at the age of 58 and become a bestselling author. He passed away in 2012
My mother, Sunanda encouraged my love for writing, going with me to publishers when I, as a college student, saw a seemingly impossible dream to get a book published, and always being the whisper in my ear telling me that no dream was too big to dream. Cancer may have taken her from me in 2001, but I still feel she's there with me, gently nudging me to write one more page, to see one more dream
WHERE MY WRITING JOURNEY BEGAN
Ever since I was a child, I loved storytelling- I had an imaginary friend who sat next to me in class and wrote a diary about how the world ended and buried it in the garden so that future historians would find it! The immediate spark for me taking the first real step towards the dream of being a writer was an interview of Stephen King which I read when I was eleven years old, and living in Canada at that time. He had said something to the effect that anytime anyone paid you a penny for your work, you were a published author. I took some poems I had written, stapled them together with solutions to the next term’s Maths textbook (figuring nobody would want to pay for my poems alone) and sold them to my classmates at fifty cents a copy. The $12.50 I earned was my first ‘royalty’ payment! I published my first ‘real’ book in college, a book on Economic History of India, and the thrill of seeing my name in print is something I still feel.
I don't know if the concept of rebirth is true or not, but I certainly would consider myself to have been reborn in a way over the last few years. That came with the realization that I had met a woman whom I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. Having Puja in my life rekindled my hope that things could turn out for the better after all.
My writing had taken a backseat since my mother's death, and I had drunk myself to obesity. I quit drinking, got back into shape and kickstarted my writing with a resolution to write one book a year. In 2004 Puja made me the happiest man on Earth by agreeing to marry me. After more than three wonderful years of marriage, we were joined in May 2008 by the latest addition to our little family- Aaditya.
My resolution is to write one book a year- and as long as you keep reading, I'll keep writing.