Friday, 16 September 2016

An Interview with Sourabh Mukherjee

Let's Welcome Sourabh Mukherjee for an interactive session on The Bookworm! 

1. So, What is writing to you?

Writing is a passion that actually allows me to unwind. Sometimes, stories have grown from thoughts I have penned down
in airport lounges or on long flights during my business travels. I believe if you are really passionate about something,
you end up finding time for chasing your dreams. Writing is also at times a cathartic experience for me. It helps me give
vent to my emotions and to create stories out of them in the process.

2. As a child, if you go through the old slam books, what did you want to be?

I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. I have never really written for a purpose – it is just something I love to do. In my early childhood, I would spend hours writing, as well as making illustrations for my own stories. A number of my poems were published in children’s magazines like Anandamela and Shuktara back in the day. I continued to write through my teenage and later in college.

3. How did your book, "Romance Shorts" happen?

Romance Shorts is a collection of four contemporary romantic short stories. The stories bring out the various emotions associated with love – pain, agony, jealousy, longing and bliss. The stories go beyond conventional ‘happily-ever-after’ endings and every story ends with a twist. The stories reflect my own perceptions and ideas about love.

Also, the book is a quick read. The length of the book is appropriate for reading while one is commuting, during a lunch break at work or while waiting for a flight. I was mindful of the fact that, a number of readers today struggle to squeeze out time for reading from their hectic schedules, but at the same time, crave for quality literature with a lasting impact.

4. Tell us about your inspiration.

As we chase our dreams in a big and busy city, at some point in life we become slaves to our aspirations and unrealistic ambitions. And it is not too long before we realize success and wealth alone do not make our hearts skip a few beats and more. Our trophies fill up an empty shelf, but not a lonely evening. It is important, therefore, to chase our dreams and our passion. I started writing with these thoughts. Writing was also a cathartic experience for me. It helped me give vent to my pent up emotions and spun stories out of them.

The question you need to ask yourself here, and this is exactly what I do, is – what are you in the game for? Is it the money? Or, is it the excitement and the re-assurance you feel when people read your story, look up from the book and think in awe – ‘That was my story!’

What motivates me at the end of the day is to have people read my book, and relate what they read to experiences they have been through themselves.

5. The cover of your book, is extremely attractive. How far do you think the cover does justice to the book?

Irrespective of what wise men suggest, we usually end up judging a book by its cover. We wanted a cover that should convey the spirit of the book. We wanted an impactful artwork that should have the right elements and colours to stir the emotions buried in our hearts, and readers are loving the cover of Romance Shorts.

6. What is romance all about, according to you?

My ideas about romance are summarized in the thoughts of Riya, the protagonist of ‘Love Came Calling Again’, one of the stories in the book. I will present an extract here to answer your question:
“I have always wanted to feel the love for someone, more than being loved and pampered.
I missed having someone in my life I would feel like cuddling with, on the couch in front of the TV with a tub of popcorn on a rainy evening, or someone I would just be happy buying things for even if he didn’t need any of those. I missed being unreasonably possessive about someone.
I wanted every romantic song I heard to throw up images of me in the arms of that special someone. I’ve always wanted someone to think of when it rained and the earth smelt sweet; I’ve always waited for a name I could whisper with my heart and soul, while clinging to my pillows under a warm blanket on a cold winter night.
I spent my days and nights with that dream. And when I would meet him, there would be chimes in the air and a light drizzle, and an unruly breeze would play with my dupatta before his passionate gaze."

7. Tell us something about you that we don't know.

Holding my son in my arms for the first time was one of the most cherished moments of my life.

8. Who are your favourite authors ?

Jeffrey Archer is an all-time favourite. I think he is an institution when it comes to storytelling – whether it’s his novels or his short stories.
When it comes to reading, I am an avid reader of crime fiction. I am a big fan of Agatha Christie – mainly because of Poirot’s methods of investigation, the witty repartees, the human emotions at the core of the crimes. The Byomkesh Bakshi stories by Saradindu Bandopadhyay have inspired my crime writing immensely.

Among more recent crime authors, I like the Alex Cross stories by James Patterson – not just for the thrills, but also for the underlying human emotions. I was floored by The Devotion of Suspect X and Malice by Keigo Higashino. I am also hooked to the works of Gillian Flynn.

9. Any message for our readers?

I want Indian readers in the Romance genre to explore alternate forms of romance stories. I want them to read stories that bring out the various hues of love – jealousy, insecurity, betrayal and revenge. We have been fed on candy-floss romance stories, inspired mainly by Bollywood, for years now. But there is so much more to romance than boy-meets-girl stories or clich├ęd mentalities.

10.Ten Years hence, where do you picture yourself?

I usually take each day as it comes and don’t plan for the distant future. However, I hope I will continue to receive the love and encouragement of my readers and will continue to entertain, excite and stimulate them with my stories.

11. Where can the readers buy your book?
Readers can purchase Romance Shorts for only Rs. 99/- at:

Amazon | Flipkart

12. Where can the readers contact you?

I will be very happy to interact with readers of Romance Shorts

Click up on the above links for your queries or you may drop in your comments :) 

Bookworm says, Goodbye! 

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