Monday, June 26, 2017

Blog Tour: THE WRONG TURN by Sanjay Chopra & Namita Roy Ghose

Are you a fan of the #Romance genre? Click here to know more...



THE WRONG TURN:
Love and Betrayal in the Time of Netaji
by
Sanjay Chopra & Namita Roy Ghose



Blurb

1944, Kohima — a small, sleepy town in northeast India. Subhash Chandra Bose and his Indian National Army (INA) along with the Japanese, are on the brink of bringing the Empire to its knees and forcing the British out of India. But, inexplicably, the tables turn. The INA’s advance is thwarted and the victory march to Delhi is halted. Seventy years later, the British admit that the Battle of Kohima was the greatest battle they had ever fought. Even more so than the battles of Waterloo and Dunkirk. Was it then that old Indian curse — betrayal? Someone from within Netaji’s own ranks? Were there forces other than the British, waiting in the shadows closer to home, who stood to gain even more from the INA’s defeat? Or was it just love that irrevocably altered the course of India’s destiny? The Wrong Turn: Love and Betrayal in the Time of Netaji, is a sweeping tale of passion set against the freedom struggle. Debraj, the rakish playboy and scion of a distinguished Calcutta family, and Nishonko, the fiery revolutionary sworn to the cause of the INA, must not only fight their common enemy, but also for the love of Aditi, the rebel with the healing touch. A haunting tale of love, friendship and betrayal of an entire nation, The Wrong Turn veers inexorably towards a poignant redemption.

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About the authors


The Wrong Turn is a story that traverses the cities of Calcutta, Singapore, Rangoon and Kohima caught up in the blaze of the Second World War. It is about the clash of four desperate forces as they come together in Kohima to vie for the brightest jewel in the crown -- India. Victory will come to those who possess not just the coldest steel but even colder hearts.”

SANJAY CHOPRA is an airline pilot and author of two collections of short stories.  Said and Done and Tailspin stories . He believes that his  office forty thousand feet in the sky and his travels provide him with a view that fuels his vivid storytelling that cuts a wide arc through time and space.

His stories have won the Invisible Ink, the Millennium writers and Southport awards in the UK and USA. In the words of his readers, ‘He is a storyteller like those of the old days, yet his stories are as modern as tomorrow.

He lives in Mumbai with his wife Tisca Chopra, an actress and he is currently working on a film script and a web series. 


You can stalk him @
      

               

Follow the Authors of The Wrong Turn @ Pinterest

  


This was a story waiting to be told. So much about Netaji was smoke and mirrors, partial views foisted on us by the British and other vested interests. Here was a man who was a personal hero, who was part of the lore of my childhood. And here was a chance to set the narrative straight - through the lens of a very human yet universal story of love.

During a school project on ‘The most memorable day of my life’, NAMITA ROY GHOSE wrote about a Russian girl on the day WW2 ended. She got her first rejection slip from the teacher for making things up. Ever since, Namita has established her storytelling skills through her scriptwriting, screenplays poetry, fiction, legendary advertising campaigns, and as a renowned advertising film director. A Creative Director with HTA, she left after 13 years to start her own film company, White Light, one of India’s top ad film outfits. A social activist, she is the founder of Vanashakti, an NGO that works to protect the environment. Namita has done pro bono work on issues like domestic violence, child welfare, sexual harassment and forest preservation. She is an avid traveller, a photographer, foodie and teacher.

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   Praise for the book


Vidya Balan "I like historical fiction. This one is just gripping, racing along like a thriller. I am sure people will love it and I wish Namita and Sanjay all the best for the book".

Shekhar Gupta: “Gripping reading. This is one writer duo with story-telling imagination and uncluttered turn of phrase”.

Jug Suraiya: “A sweeping saga of war, love and betrayal, set at a climactic point of India’s fight for freedom”.

Lord Meghnad Desai: “An absorbing and indeed thrilling story of one of the most crucial events in India’s history”.

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Saturday, June 3, 2017

Blog Tour: HALF PANTS, FULL PANTS REAL LIFE: TALES FROM SHIMOGA by Anand Suspi




HALF PANTS, FULL PANTS
REAL LIFE TALES FROM SHIMOGA
by
Anand Suspi



Blurb

Half Pants Full Pants is a sort of childhood autobiography set in Shimoga of the 70s and 80s. Given the era and milieu that he grew up in, it carries a flavor similar to that of Malgudi Days. All the characters in the book are real and most of them are still in Shimoga, of course now in their mid-40s. Quite a few are from prominent families and are now active and important members of Shimoga. The book vividly captures the real childhood adventures of this generation of people in Shimoga. It’s a glorious reminiscence as well as a tribute to this wonderful town.

R. Balki says

“After Malgudi Days, I could never imagine that someone could create a childhood classic for adults to regain their innocence even for a few hours. Suspi’s tales would have made R K Narayan smile. Oh! That beautiful Kannadiga gene!”

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About the author


An advertising writer for over 20 years, he started with Mudra, Mumbai in 1995 and subsequently spent a large part of his career in Lowe Lintas working under Balki. He was the Creative Head of Lowe Delhi between 2007 and 2010. Currently, he lives in Gurgaon and is the co-founder of an ad agency called AndAnd Brand Partners.

Half Pants Full Pants is his first book, a sort of childhood autobiography set in Shimoga of the 70s and 80s. Given the era and milieu that he grew up in, it carries a flavor similar to that of Malgudi Days. The notable difference would be that every story is real and the characters are all in their mid-40s now, often reminiscing about the gloriousness of their growing up years.

Featured in New Indian Express


The Hindu


Times of India


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Sunday, May 28, 2017

Sharing: A DAUGHTER'S RESPONSE TO HER MOTHER

                                  28th May, Global Menstrual Hygiene Day 


It all began a year ago, on May 28, 2016, when I posted this article on Menstruation awareness, from my own life experiences. Click here to read the article...

And what you see below is my daughter Vinitha's response to what I had written:
                                        
Thank you Ma for not being silent 
Thank you Ma for making it your mission to speak to me when I was 10
Thank you Ma for not making me feel that it was ‘dirty’
Thank you Ma for protecting me from the religious dogma around menstruation 
Thank you Ma for telling me about menstruation through the birds and bees story that made it all the more interesting   
Thank you Ma for inspiring me to talk to my girlfriends, normalizing menstruation for them  
Thank you Ma for making ‘getting your chums’ something to look forward to 
Thank you Ma for being you 

I wish every girl had a mother like you!

With 54% girls saying that mothers are the main source of information regarding menstruation and over 50% of girls unaware prior to menstruating, it is imperative to throw light on the time, content and delivery of information.

Yes, it is significant for girls to KNOW about menstruation before they get it 
It is imperative that the information is ACCURATE and girls know how to MANAGE it  
It is equally vital that every girl is made to FEEL GOOD about getting her chums  

While I believe in every girl’s right to information about menstruation – that she must be empowered with knowledge and ‘right emotion’ towards it, let’s take a moment to look at the controversial perspective. Sometimes I wonder, why so much hue and cry around something so natural, a biological phenomenon that 100% of women are faced with (there is no probability there), an occurrence that is part of every girl's growing up. Hence the questions - What is so special? Why so much discussion? Are we not sensationalizing the issue? Is it really needed?  It is arguable that if women have faced it for generations, why the emphasis now? 

Here is the answer:

With 70% of mothers thinking that menstruation is dirty, we have a whole lot of work to do. It is time to talk, initiate a dialogue and have a conversation. 

Normalizing menstruation, breaking the taboo and getting people to talk is half the battle won. Because when women (or even men for that matter) start talking and break away from the concepts of impurity and shame associated with the topic, it opens up a world of information before them, information that they will be ready to listen to, accept and comprehend. It opens up possibilities like never before.  While there is enough controversy around the topic – it doesn’t take away from the fact that the menstrual health and management value chain is key: 

Awareness: Girls must be aware before their time, and feel right about it 
Access: Girls and their mothers must have access to sanitary pads or other bio degradable products - it should be available, affordable, they should know where to get it 
Use: Knowledge on how to use pads / alternate products and maintenance of hygiene is key 
Waste Management: With huge environmental implications, awareness on disposal is imperative 

Let us rise together for better menstrual health and hygiene management. 

Globally, 28th May is observed as Menstrual Hygiene Day to call attention to and normalize menstruation.                                                                                                 


Let’s demystify! Let’s talk!  

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Book Review: THE INDUS CHALLENGE by R. Durgadoss


My Review:

The first thing that attracted my attention towards the book is the gorgeous cover. It made me want to read the blurb and I was hooked.

The story is a weave of history, mythology and fiction and has obviously been extremely well-researched. It brings forth the history from both Indian as well as Greek point of view during Alexander’s invasion.

I have read quite a few books where Chanakya plays a pivotal role. The Indus Challenge brings forth yet another angle to the kingmaker.

Rudra is a fascinating character and I am already curious to know about the story of his next janam (birth).

When I read the book, I couldn’t help but be impressed by the command that the author wields over the English language.

I don’t want to say more about the story to avoid spoilers.


VERDICT: A must read if you are a fan of this genre.



The Blurb:

Bharat is in chaos. While the kingdoms fight each other, Alexander’s forces gather for the assault, their leader lured by tales of supernatural weapons and the elixir of immortality. Only one man can save the subcontinent from domination by the Greeks: the young Chandragupta Maurya, trained under the aegis of the ‘dark brahmin’, Chanakya.

When an ancient seal is found, sharing the secrets of the brahmastra, the redoubtable weapon of the Mahabharat, it is up to Rudra, young commander of the Mauryan Nava Yuva Sena and lifelong friend and confidante of Chandragupta, to decode it. Along with his fellow commandos, and with the able guidance of his guru, Rudra embarks on a quest that takes him from the snowy peaks of the Himalayas to the seas of Rameshwaram, hunting the clues that will lead him to the brahmastra. On the way, he meets the Chiranjivis, ancient beings tasked with divine duties, and learns the secrets behind his own birth and his mysterious powers.

But Rudra must be careful, for not all enemies were dispersed with the death of the mighty Alexander. Treachery lurks in the home, and when Rudra is framed for the attempted murder of his sovereign, he must pull every trick at his disposal to reveal the enemy, and save his kingdom from plunging, once more, into bloodshed and chaos.

A historical, mythological adventure story, The Indus Challenge is sure to appeal to readers interested in the storied past of India and the legends woven into its soil.


Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Blog Tour: THE INDUS CHALLENGE by R. Durgadoss



THE INDUS CHALLENGE
by
R. Durgadoss




Blurb

Bharat is in chaos. While the kingdoms fight each other, Alexander’s forces gather for the assault, their leader lured by tales of supernatural weapons and the elixir of immortality. Only one man can save the subcontinent from domination by the Greeks: the young Chandragupta Maurya, trained under the aegis of the ‘dark brahmin’, Chanakya.

When an ancient seal is found, sharing the secrets of the brahmastra, the redoubtable weapon of the Mahabharat, it is up to Rudra, young commander of the Mauryan Nava Yuva Sena and lifelong friend and confidante of Chandragupta, to decode it. Along with his fellow commandos, and with the able guidance of his guru, Rudra embarks on a quest that takes him from the snowy peaks of the Himalayas to the seas of Rameshwaram, hunting the clues that will lead him to the brahmastra. On the way, he meets the Chiranjivis, ancient beings tasked with divine duties, and learns the secrets behind his own birth and his mysterious powers.

But Rudra must be careful, for not all enemies were dispersed with the death of the mighty Alexander. Treachery lurks in the home, and when Rudra is framed for the attempted murder of his sovereign, he must pull every trick at his disposal to reveal the enemy, and save his kingdom from plunging, once more, into bloodshed and chaos.

A historical, mythological adventure story, The Indus Challenge is sure to appeal to readers interested in the storied past of India and the legends woven into its soil.



Read an excerpt of The Indus Challenge here:

Prologue
330 bc
The Macedonians and Greeks came with Alexander the Great to the Hindu Kush range. They were mesmerized by the land of the gods, snow-covered, forested mountains higher than Olympus. The sun rising and setting among the glistening peaks painted a breathtaking picture. They were entranced by the stories of the magical kingdoms of the air; of the heavens; of Vishnu and Shiva; of cities in the sky inhabited by sky demons. They were fascinated by the story of Surya, the sun god, who galloped across the sky each day in his golden chariot, pulled by the five horses, while down below in the dark bowels of the earth were giant serpents, red-eyed, flesh-eating demons and other creatures of the underworld.
It was at this time that the people of Bharat were looking inwards, while the Macedonians aggressively explored outwards and wanted to conquer the world. The kingdoms of Bharat were threatened by the aggressive Macedonians. No king or kingdom was free from the aggressor’s attack. Fragmented kingdoms, disunity and distrust among the rulers made these kingdoms an easy target for the Macedonians.
During this period, several events are shrouded in mystery—what brought Alexander to India? How did he die at such a young age? What were the origins of Chandragupta Maurya? How did a young lad of humble origins take on a mighty king? How did a poor Brahmin pundit help a poor young man rise to power from nowhere? What extraordinary powers did Chandragupta possess that made him so successful? Who were his key generals? Who won wars for him? The questions are endless.
There are several seemingly unconnected dots, as the history of this time is shrouded in deep mystery. Rudra effortlessly unlocks the ancient secrets and aligns the unconnected dots. Mystery unravelled; secrets decoded…
In the second avatar (Janam Two) as Rudra during the tumultuous times of Alexander and Chanakya, he offers stunning clues and revelations. His decrypting skills leave a trail that answers several mysteries in our rich history.
At last, Rudra, heading the Nine Unknown Men Army (NUM), has arrived to decode the secrets to save humanity from cataclysm and extinction.
1
Parthiva year, 306 bc, Kartika (November) month, Friday evening.
The Massaga fort in the Hindu Kush had surrendered to Rudra, the commander-in-chief of the Mauryan army. He was taking stock of the situation. At this hour, a cry hit his ears. ‘Meri raksha karo! (Please save me from the barbarians!’) A woman’s shrieking voice reverberated against the mountains.
‘Why does this lady cry so?’ asked Rudra, looking curiously at his companion. He turned in the direction from where the voice was coming. To his surprise, he saw two cages in which two persons stood, chained. There was a young woman around twenty-two years old, and in the other cage was a bright young lad.
Rudra looked at the cage closely. The woman was gorgeous, seductive, shapely. Her hair was kohl-black, and cascaded over her shoulders. She had thin eyebrows, velvety eyelashes, sea-nymph ears, a sharp nose, shiny white teeth, almond-shaped eyes and glossy skin.
She was wasp-waisted, and her pouting, luscious lips conveyed her displeasure. Her hips and bust were almost of equal size. Her perfect shape reminded him of many icons of beauty he had seen. Her fleshy rounded back attracted his attention.
Rudra realized that he was going overboard ogling at the young women. But in spite of her beautiful features, she seemed to be a fading flower, possibly due to her weakness and exhaustion.
He turned his head towards the surrendered commander of the opposing army, Dharma Sena.
‘Dharma Sena, who are these caged persons?’ asked Rudra.
‘Forget these idiots, Commander. Let me take you round the fort.’ Dharma Sena said, ‘This is Massaga, the great fort city of the Asvakas, the tribe of horsemen. To the south and west are gigantic rocks which defy climbing. To the east is the swift-flowing mountain torrent, the Masakavati river. This famous fort is situated on a hill 6,000 feet high and has a circumference of twelve miles. At the top of the fort, there is arable land requiring a thousand men to cultivate it. This land is capable of feeding more than 30,000 men indefinitely. There are also perennial springs and reservoirs. Every hill here is a natural fort, Commander. Every man here is a horse soldier, Commander. A mighty rampart of stone, brick and timber surrounds the fort, which also has a moat on three sides and the river on the fourth.
‘Commander, “Masika” means “serpent’s hole”, a name indicating the supposed impregnability of the fort and the valour of its defender.’
‘I realize how impregnable your fort is, Dharma Sena. I had to use my best skills to tame you and your fort. By the way, I am impressed by the seven gates leading to the citadel. Can you give me an overview of your fort, Dharma Sena?’
‘You have sharp eyes, Commander. You noticed our seven gates? I am impressed. Let me show you around.’



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About the author


A consistent Top Rank holder and a Gold Medallist throughout his academics, Mr. Durgadoss has had a career spanning 30 years comprising of depth from industry and width from management consultancy as highlights. He has held various senior management positions in top notch companies. Having travelled extensively on consulting assignments, he has interacted with prominent International Bodies like the UNIDO, Investment Bankers and companies held by Professors of Harvard Business School. He has a rare exposure to multiple cultures namely, MNCs, Home grown large groups, family concerns and public sector undertakings during his career. He is blessed with 360 degree analytical skills, which in turn emanates from his all round experience as a Functional head, General manager, Entrepreneur and a Board director. He is an advisor on the board of Directors of several companies benefiting the organizations with his remarkable cross functional skills and his up to date knowledge. Currently he is the Group Director – Finance and Strategy, House of S.T.Bhatia, United Arab Emirates (UAE). In addition he is the chief mentor, coach and Co – Promoter of Icon Management Services (IMS), UAE. Unceasing ‘Value Addition’ and not just ‘Validation’ is the mantra of success for IMS, a multi – disciplinary management consultancy organisation. He has multi-sectoral / cultural/ territorial/ functional exposure with proven track record of success. He is a PhD on Corporate Governance which involves CSR dimensions. He has delivered several lectures in various forums on Character, Competence and Consciousness (3Cs) towards the society and also has several articles to his credit.

Track travelled...

Raising the altitude from a functional entrant to a functional champion, extending his width as a management consultant of a Big 4 firm, he took up the profit centre head position, with a challenging revival assignment in the mid nineties.

Then he moved up to the entrepreneurial mode by taking up the role of a Managing Director of a new venture. Due to several macro economic factors, the venture went into deep trouble. He faced the worst disaster of his life on this venture, losing money, peace and friends, who invested along with him. From the brink of bankruptcy, he fought back to reach the basin of wisdom & wealth in the current assignment as the Director of a large group based in Dubai. The turbulence he went through during this phase tested his character & confidence. Now, along with Dr. Yerram Raju, his co-author, he has penned down this book on Character driven Competence, which elucidates practical ways of ‘Winning without Sinning’. He always says ‘Momentum leaders don’t wait for the waves; instead they build their waves and ride on them’.

After having fought the greatest wars in the deep chambers of his soul, he came triumphant, obtained his PHD in Corporate Governance and now presents the book with the worldly wisdom, gained by him during his career. 

‘Experience is the greatest from of Education’ says Dr. Durgadoss.


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Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Hot New Release: ROSE GARDEN INTERNATIONAL

I am proud to present my 16th book, ROSE GARDEN INTERNATIONAL (The Bansal Legacy Book #2). It's available as an ebook exclusively on Amazon and is also #FREE on #KindleUnlimited.


Read an excerpt:

Rhea melted in Jamie’s arms, hanging on to his shoulders for support. But for his arms that had curved around her slim waist, she would have sunk to the floor, her legs having gone weak and rubbery. She opened her lips to let his tongue in and felt her heart hammer against her chest as he explored her mouth thoroughly, making sounds of appreciation in his throat that aroused her to fever pitch. 

It was a while before they came up for air and Rhea buried her face on his chest. So that’s how a kiss felt! It was explosive, mind blowing! She took deep breaths to calm her heart but it simply refused to listen. 

But Rhea being Rhea, she was keen to check out Jamie’s mouth, the same way he had explored hers. Raising her head from his chest, she locked her arms around his neck, pulling his head down. She ran a damp tongue over the seam of his lips, seeking entry. 

Becoming aware of what she was doing, Jamie smiled against her mouth, before drawing her tongue within. He held her close, his body growing harder still as she swept her tongue inside the cavern of his mouth, a tad hesitant at first. 

Rhea grew bolder as she relished the sensations that played havoc with her nervous system. He tasted so good and all male. Drunk on it, she tangled her tongue with his, wanting more. 

What is the story about?

Interior Designer Jamie Scott from Australia feels a strange connection to Ooty, a hill station in South India—what one would say, ‘a call of the soul’. Then there are those diaries that his grandmother had left behind. Jamie decides to go on a holiday to Ooty.

Rhea Bansal runs 5-star hotel Rose Garden International on oiled wheels, as its managing director. She finds herself at a loose end—as if there’s no challenge left in her life.

And soon, the challenge walks into her life...

Will Rhea, with her broken relationships, be able to forge a new and lasting one, that too one that’s interracial? Will she let anyone get close enough to reach her heart? 

More complications set in though, in the form of a policeman and a politician. 

Read the story to see if the high-powered businesswoman from North India who has settled in the South and the laidback artist from Alice Springs in Australia can have a life together.

*Rose Garden International is the second book in the trilogy "The Bansal Legacy".

Rose Garden International is already #1 on #HotNewReleases in Amazon USA with a few hours of its release:


You want to grab a copy? Click here: myBook.to/RGI 

Launched by



Sunday, April 23, 2017

Sharing: Sneak Peek Sunday Snippet from THE MALHOTRA BRIDE

I am sharing an excerpt from my 1st novel, THE MALHOTRA BRIDE as part of Sneak Peek Sunday Snippet, as suggested by Romance Author Devika Fernando.

Here you go:


Akshay did not have long to wait. A group of students came out of the building. You couldn’t have missed Sunita. She appeared the brightest among the dozen or so students who stepped out.
   He caught his breath as he blinked a couple of times to clear his vision. The formal studio portrait had done her no justice. This lovely vision that was walking towards him almost knocked Akshay off his feet. She was too busy chatting and laughing with her friends to notice him. Luxuriant dark brown hair hung to her waist. Her eyes were large and expressive, framed by long lashes. He could not miss the luscious lips as she pouted at someone’s comment. It was not just the boys who were listening raptly to her words.
   Akshay’s observant eyes noticed her taut breasts covered by a plain yellow t-shirt. He moved his eyes away with great difficulty to check out the rest of her hourglass figure that was fitted into dark blue designer jeans. The idea of marrying this vision did not seem so farfetched now.
   He shook himself. Looks were not everything. He could line up a bevy of beauties at the flick of his fingers. But they were quite empty and shallow under their lovely hairstyles.
   He was definitely hooked by Sunita’s allure. He would meet her in the evening, despite a big family hanging around.
   The students passed him by the gate. Sunita didn’t even turn in his direction. A mite disappointed, Akshay shrugged his wide shoulders. Time enough for that in the evening!
   While Sunita pretended to be busy talking to her friends, she couldn’t help but notice the handsome hunk hanging out at the gate. She checked him out from the corner of her lovely eyes.
   But he was too attractive! She had met her share of good-looking men. This one was a class apart.
   He was obviously a couple of inches over six feet and broad-shouldered with a tapering waist. God seemed to have been in an extremely benevolent mood when he created this particular specimen. A very broad and intelligent forehead, dark wings for eyebrows, dark eyes, a long, sharp and prominent nose, chiselled lips, the lower one slightly thicker than the one above and a square jaw. Sunita noticed all this in a flash.
   And here she was stuck with Akshay Malhotra. She sighed in frustration. Her chin jutted out stubbornly. She had her plan and was quite confident that she would send Malhotra packing.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Blog Tour: KEY TO MY SOUL by Probal Mazumdar


Check out the Schedule Here

KEY TO MY SOUL
by
Probal Mazumdar



Blurb

"When Siddharth, a lonely young man with a failed marriage gets a sudden phone-call from a mysterious person about his lost childhood lover, Hazel, and learns that she is battling for life, he is shaken to the core. He also learns that she had left certain letters for him fifteen years back that never reached him. It disturbs him so much that he rushes to the hospital in his old hometown. There he discovers an eclipsed past buried in time that is riddled with dangerous surprises, trauma, twists of fate, sacrifices that exemplify true love and the real reasons for the tragic end of their childhood love story. But will Hazel ever open her eyes to see him..."

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About the author


Probal Mazumdar works in an IT company. He is an NIT engineer by societal pressure, singer by accident, guitarist by love at first sound, poet by soul, writer by passion, a world class badminton player in childhood dreams, rebel by day, recluse by night, a samosa in a family of laddoos, a Jughead at the dining table, a shameless and congenital dreamer. 

Oh! An arsonist too – when his wife is not around, sets his own house on fire with his little son. 

He won the FIRST prize in the All India Poetry Competition, 2014, conducted by PSI (Poetry Society of India). Click on www.indianpoetry.org/awardsgeneral14.htm

His other poems have risen too from cold storage into literary journals like Indian Literature (Sahitya Akademi), Wasafiri (U.K. Vol. 67), Acumen (U.K.), OtherPoetry (U.K.), Chandrabhaga Literary Journal (Editor Jayanta Mahapatra), Dhauli Review, amongst others.

He writes short stories too. This is his first foray into writing a novel.

The Title of the Book is “Key To My Soul.”

The entire plot and story of the novel hinges on these words of the Title. Once the protagonist, Sidd, finds out the Key, he enters the Soul of his long lost beloved. The words, “Key to my Soul” is also a phrase used by his beloved in a letter to him which is the axis the story revolves around.

Click on the links below to check out the media mentions about this author:


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Sunday, April 9, 2017

Author Interview: RUBINA RAMESH, author of KNITTED TALES & FINDING THE ANGEL

Rubina Ramesh
Today I bring you Rubina Ramesh, proud and popular indie author of two books, one an eclectic collection of short stories while the other is a beautiful and touching romance novel, as diverse as they come. I have known Rubina since 2013 and I am also proud of the fact that she inaugurated her THE BOOK CLUB with the blog tour of my first published novella. There's more to Rubina than a writer. She's an ace reviewer and marketeer, though my first association with the lady was when I came across her short stories during a contest and was totally impressed. I am mighty chuffed about the fact that I had a hand in pushing Rubina to publishing her work. Yeah, writing she has been doing for many years, while publishing is a different ballgame altogether. And I am truly thrilled that my friend has chosen the indie path - a mite difficult maybe, but totally self satisfying, I must say. I am sure she agrees with me.

So, here you go...

Sundari Venkatraman: Rubina Ramesh, the marketer VS Rubina Ramesh, the author - how tough is it to wear two entirely different hats? Do you find it easy or difficult to promote your own work?

Rubina Ramesh: Hi Sundari, Thanks for these lovely questions. You really know how to ask the tough ones

Sundari Venkatraman: Glad to hear that

Rubina Ramesh: I am an author by choice and a marketer by chance. You know we started this journey together. During those days, some 4 years back, the idea of gathering reviews was not so much in vogue in the Indian scenario. Though we had some terrific reviewers gathering the book lovers together, the word “cross-promotions” was looked down upon.

It might be I was living in the USA and I can stay up late, which made it possible for me to reach out the readers in their prime time. Now prime time in every zone varies. And this became my field to play with. I fell in love with cross promotions and I met some authors who trusted me enough with their books. They did not even ask me as to why I needed the free copies. I have been blessed that way.

Sundari Venkatraman:  Oh yes! I remember only too well how we started off together. It's been a wonderful and self-satisfying journey indeed. Cheers! Now for my next question: You had an opportunity to go trad publish. Why did you change your mind? Are you happy with your decision?

Rubina Ramesh: Not once but four times. My first two books were trad published and I had the blessing of the Man above to be published on the same pages as Gulzar Sir. Thanks to Fablery Publications for arranging that. But then, one of the big publishers along with a few upcoming ones accepted my book Finding the Angel and my upcoming Maya. (Yes, I had written Maya many years ago) But the changes they asked me to make, I just could not.

The world is changing nowadays Sundari. I am trying to be true to my art. My story. My effort and my mistakes. I leave it to the readers to decide whether they like me or not. It cannot be the likes and dislikes of one human being. Period. So like I live my life, I relive my stories. On my own terms.

Sundari Venkatraman: I know exactly what you mean. I found this quote under Mind Chow in today's Mumbai Mirror, "If you're creating anything at all, it's really dangerous to care what people think" and was thinking how apt it is for us indie authors and your reply just confirms that thought. So when are we going to read your next book? What genre is this one going to be?

Rubina Ramesh: Maya. I just cannot let go of it yet. It’s a drama or a psychological thriller, as you want to call it. I like experimenting with genres. I am writing a fantasy also. One day maybe an erotica. I won’t suggest this to new authors at all. Very risky since the chance of losing your audience is more. But the readers are more intelligent now and they like exploring things too. They like coming out of their comfort zone. I have had serious readers coming up and saying they like Finding the Angel and romance readers falling in love with Knitted Tales. I have had a few who rejected the other one based on their likes of my one book. Fair enough. I am not out to please all but to satiate those 3 hours that a reader spends on a book. Only those three hours where they forget their likes and dislikes. I dream of stories and write them. And my dreams are varied.

Knitted Tales in Paperback
Sundari Venkatraman: I have been hearing a lot about your Maya. I am waiting eagerly to get my hands on it. My fingers crossed that you are able to complete it soon. Okay, now for the next one and maybe this question should have been the first one. Knitted Tales is a short story collection of mixed genre. Finding The Angel is a gentle romance. They can't get more diverse and I must say both are extremely well penned. How do you manage that?

Rubina Ramesh: Where is it written that a writer has to be curbed within the boundaries of a genre? I read everything I can lay my hands on. Every genre. Every kind of author. To me, it does not matter, if he or she is an indie author provided the story is well edited. So if I can read any genre, I think I want to write in a few diverse genres as well

Sundari Venkatraman: You have a very valid point there. And I know from my experience with Knitted Tales that you can write in diverse genres. Keep writing is all I can say. Do we get to see your books in paperback anytime soon?

Rubina Ramesh: Oh yes! My Knitted Tales has come out as Paperback now and soon all others will follow. Amazon has been great to authors like us. Eccentric and those who don’t follow the rules. You will know that feeling, right Sundari?

Sundari Venkatraman: I can's but agree with your point about Amazon. With this we come to the end of an awesome interview. Looking forward to reading more and more of your work, Rubina Ramesh. I wish you the very best in your journey as a writer, an entrepreneur and reviewer. Kudos!

Click here to buy the author's books: Author.to/Rubina