We are back with another author interview. Today, with us, we have Tarun Vikash – the author of ‘She Stood by Me’. In this interview, Tarun talks about his writing aspirations, inclination towards romance, and the route to getting his book published. Stay on...while we chat with him.
What motivates you to write?
I have been an ardent reader for a decade now and I mostly read Indian authors. The absence of nice stories around me actually motivated me to write. There was a time when I realized that I am not reading the genre of books I want to read. My peers also complained of the same when I decided to write for everyone out there waiting for a nice novel. I also want my stories to convey a message in every novel I write.
I don’t intend to write a boring storyline, which people forget ultimately down the memory lane. I want my stories to be remembered forever and it can only happen if it moves them, touches them deep and they could relate to my characters in their daily life.
What inspired you to write this book? Any tales to tell…
I would say that the latest trend of love and break up which happens in no time today jolted me deeply. I wanted the Tinder generation to understand the depth of love. They need to know what is the true meaning of love and it can only happen if someone like me takes up the responsibility. So I decided that first few books of mine will be inspired by true events and relevant to what is going on right now in the current generation.
For me, love is a natural phenomenon and not a match made on apps. It is a long journey for both the boy and the girl. Only when you struggle in life and the other person helps you out of it all the time, you understand the essence of love in life. And these things very rarely happen with people who tend to find love through apps. Stop digitalizing love guys, is all I could say.
The second reason being, lately only novels based on break ups are out by most authors. When authors fall out of topics, they start writing anything and everything but they forget that it is impacting someone’s brain apart from giving them a message. Break up stories are more appealing and relatable as it is the only thing happening around today but someone has to talk about love stories too which get itched in one’s memory. I knew many such love stories. So I had to give it to the people.
Thirdly, I am a happy person and I want to spread happiness all around. So, what better a way than bringing a romance novel full of humor and love? To be happy, love is the only way out.
How did you handle the response of this book?
Well people are loving it more than I had expected and I hope the same continues. There are many who want to read more novels by me and are asking for my next novel release. I am happy that they are accepting me as an author which is motivating me to bring more stories to them.
All in all, it has been a great experience stating the fact that my debut novel was an Amazon bestseller in the first week of its release which was something I had not even dreamt of. It was quite an achievement for me.
Was there any character in the novel from your life?
As it is a love story based on real incident, most of the characters you see and read about are from my life. They have actually helped me become an author to be truthful. Their inputs have been through me throughout the writing process.
What are some of your favourite novels and authors?
Well, I like Chetan Bhagat Sir for giving us so many hit movies through his novels which otherwise wouldn’t have come if he wasn’t there. His novels are easy to read. I do agree that recently his novel writing style has changed but it never stopped me from reading his novels. I enjoyed reading his novels, three mistakes of my life, two states, five point someone, One Indian girl. Shiva Trilogy by Amish Tripathi is another novel I loved.
What was your biggest learning experience throughout the publishing process?
Rejection was the first thing which I learnt when I approached traditional publishers. Firstly, they take lot of time to review your work and second, they don’t want to work with debut authors. But I accepted the rejection right away as I had already researched about traditional publishing and what they look for. I knew it won’t be easy to get there.
Well I had to bring this story to people and I decided to go for self-publishing. In self-publishing as well I faced lot of challenges as the publishers were not ready to agree with many of my terms. They had some pre-defined set of rules which didn’t encourage me to go with any. Finally, I found one publisher who was fine with my terms and conditions.
Looking back, what did you do right that helped you break in as a writer?
I spent a lot of time with myself since last ten years and that allowed my thought process to develop creatively. An author has to have a thought process of his own which comes by giving time to himself more than to others.
I have a small friend circle that gives me enough quality time for myself. Moreover, my friends are book lovers too which helps me get insight from them for what I am working.
Also, I started reading novels at the right time which I feel helped me a lot to become an author. We need to read books and learn the art of storytelling. I have always been a happy person and I guess that helped me a lot in bringing out humour in my writing too.
Any best piece of writing advice from your side that we haven’t discussed?
I would suggest, if you want to become a writer, don’t try to become one. Just decide the theme and let the story come to you. One must have this habit of penning down everything that comes to their mind as and when it hits your mind. You never know how random thoughts start shaping themselves into conclusive chapters which further culminate into a novel.
I never sit down and frame my chapters. I keep the characters in my mind and allow them to play around.
Something personal about you people may be surprised to know?
I also play guitar in my spare time. I have few of my singing sessions live on social platforms like sound cloud. Also, I am an introvert who is trying to be an extrovert but I guess it will take time.
Any future books that you would like to discuss now?
There is another romance novel and a mythological fiction I am working on right now. I am done with the plots but it will take some time. Probably by the mid of this year, one of those novels might come.
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