Archive for the ‘Author Interviews’ Category


Please welcome author Olivier Lafont on my blog today. Let’s get to know him through a question and answer session.

Q: How did you become a writer?
I knew I wanted to be a writer at a very young age, actually. My love for storytelling and writing was evident very early. Since then I had written a lot of stories, even five hundred pages of an unfinished novel in high school, but ‘Warrior’ was my first major publication.

Q: How did this book idea originate?
I wanted to write a Young Adult book, after ‘Warrior’. There were several ideas I had, but the one I liked most centered around Christmas, it being a holiday favoured by young people. For me Christmas is symbolic of hope, peace, community, family. So, thematically, anything that threatens that had significance. Then it became a question of how to express, plot-wise, this idea. The notion of a Santa Claus ‘dynasty’ was interesting, because I could take and evolve the myth in my direction but also humanise it in a way that fit with my sensibilities.

Q: What appeals to you about writing this kind of book?
‘Snowbound’ is the kind of book I would have loved reading when I was young. I think you have to write what what you like to read, I can’t imagine how it would genuinely work otherwise. I’ve always been passionate about fantasy and adventures, and blending our real world with a fantasy world has also been a personal favourite. ‘Warrior’ did a similar thing, in a different register. And taking a young person into a dangerous world, in fiction, is always fun. An adult may be equipped to handle things, but you just don’t expect that of young people, just because of their age. It’s always thrilling and inspiring to see a young, awkward person grow into their power, their personality, to surprise themselves and everyone else. There’s an aspirational quality to that kind of growth. That’s why we go to heroes in stories, to imagine ourselves winning in more explicit terms than in real life.

Q: What problems did you encounter in the course of writing and publishing this work?
No problems — those are the unmatched perks of publishing yourself in the new digital marketplaces!

Q: Share about your favorite fiction books and authors.
When I first became aware of my passion for stories, it was Lloyd Alexander’s ‘The Chronicles of Prydain’ and Brian Jacques’s Redwall series. Later I read Terry Brooks’s Shannara series, and Robert Jordan’s ‘Wheel of Time’. In more recent times I’ve enjoyed George R.R. Martin’s ‘A Song of Ice and Fire’ (Game of Thrones on HBO) and Mark Lawrence’s ‘The Broken Empire’ series. Not to forget children’s works like Enid Blyton’s books and C.S. Lewis’s ‘The Chronicles of Narnia’.


Thanks for the answers, Olivier. The mention of Enid Blyton and Narnia took me back quite a bit. It was lovely having you here.

Readers, if you’d like to know more about Olivier Lafont’s latest book SnowBound, click on the previous post.


Book Spotlight – Against All Odds by Jazz Singh


Against All Odds
Jazz Singh 


The Blurb

The first time they collide, he thinks she’s a con artist, she believes he’s an arrogant snob.

It takes several meetings to change their minds about each other, but eventually, Abhimanyu and Sanjana strike up a friendship that seems destined to turn into something more. He’s a rich successful businessman, however, and she’s a small-town girl who doesn’t fit into his glittering world; a fact that Abhimanyu’s mother has taken pains to point out.

Will they ever overcome the odds, or are their lives on parallel tracks, never destined to cross?

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Meet the Author

Dear Readers,

Jazz Singh is one of the most elusive writers I have met. So respecting her need for privacy we have not asked her for a profile picture or a writeup. Long back, when I had first interacted with her.. I had asked her the reason behind this. Her answer was… I want to be known for my work. All I can say to that is… She will be…


Rubina Ramesh 

The Book Club

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Book Spotlight – Rescued by Love by Shilpa Suraj


Rescued by Love 
Shilpa Suraj


The Blurb
 When Naina Ahuja is kidnapped as hostage days before her father, a Supreme Court Chief Justice, must sentence a terrorist, the stakes are very high. Lt Col Arjun Rathore and his team are the only ones who can be trusted with the mission of saving her. 

During their arduous trek back through the hostile terrain of Ladakh, Arjun and Naina spend days in danger of losing their lives – and their hearts. Back in safety, the real world and its very real problems threaten – as do their own perceptions of the differences between them. 

They must separate – but will life rescue their love?

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Meet the Author


Shilpa was a year and a half when she was first introduced to the world of books. Her mother would park her with a picture book on the floor of the kitchen while she finished her cooking for the day. While it’s no longer the kitchen floor, you can still find her tucked away in a cosy nook somewhere with her nose buried in a book. While books in all genres interest her, it was romance that captured her heart. While racing through every romantic fiction book she could beg, borrow or buy, her over active imagination started to work overtime and weave its own stories. Years in the corporate world followed by a stint of entrepreneurship crystallised her belief that all she really wanted to do was give life to the stories bubbling inside of her. She briefly managed to tear herself away from the world of fiction to find her own personal happily ever after and now spends her time happily focusing on the two loves of her life – family and writing romances.
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Spotlight hosted by Ruchi Vasudeva author of Hartlequin romance You Can’t Fight A royal Attraction

Guest Post by Yamini Vijendren – How did I become a writer

Hi everyone, please welcome Yamini Vijendren on my blog. Today Yamini will share with us how was the experience of writing her new book ‘Full Circle’
Take it away, Yamini.
How did you become a writer?

Writing a book has been a life changing experience for me. I must confess, when I first set out plotting Full Circle, I never imagined myself as a writer. I had my hands full with my infant, and was looking for ways to preserve my sanity without compromising on my time with my little one. Writing, I had been doing right from my childhood, so I naturally gravitated towards it to keep me occupied whenever I found a little me time. I wrote a little story here, a poem there, but never had any idea of writing a full length book, whatsoever. That, until Indireads happened. There I was, searching for small freelance writing assignments to take up, when I stumbled upon the Indireads call for first time authors. The adventurer inside me asked, why not, and I just sent a synopsis, never even imagining that the publishers would love it. The next thing I know, Naheed called me up, eager to discuss on how the small synopsis I sent could be elaborated into a full-length novella.

When I started writing, I had an idea of the course my story should take. However, as the pages progressed, my initial idea ceased to look attractive, and did not gain enough traction. Here, my editors and publisher provided me great support, and after a number of brainstorming sessions, I course-corrected the story, and brought Full Circle to the shape it is today. That was a huge lesson for me, for I understood that while it is ok to start with a plan, even desirable, one also needs to be flexible enough to accommodate changes, and make course-corrections if the plan doesn’t work.

A novel might be a writer’s child, but just as an infant requires doctors to monitor her health, grandparents and siblings to give her a wholesome life, a novel too requires a whole range of people to make it a wholesome experience. What the author provides is only the raw cut sculpture. The editor, proofreaders, beta readers, publishers, reviewers, they all are the ones who make the raw entity into a fine piece of art.

Thank you, Yamini. The simile with sculpting is spot on. Writing involves almost as much work in perfecting and honing a story.

This blogpost is a part of the book tour hosted by The Book Club


Full Circle 
Yamini Vijendran


The Blurb
 Outwardly, Malini is a contented, sixty-something grandmother with a loving family and everything a person could wish for. But Malini has lived her entire life with a secret confined to the deepest recesses of her heart.

Haunted by the past, she travels to Kumbakonam, her native town, which she had left years ago. There, she comes face-to-face with her long-lost love.

After forty years, will Malini be able to reclaim her own life, when love comes knocking at her door once again?

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Meet the Author


Yamini Vijendran (@saimini) is the author of ‘Full Circle’, a romance novella published by Indireads. After being a Software Professional for 7 years, Yamini has been freelancing from home for the past 3 years. She loves to dabble in fiction and romance and drama are her favorite genres. Her short stories have been published in ‘Love Stories That Touched My Heart’, an Anthology published by Penguin India, New Asian Writing and Six Sentences. Yamini also likes to pen poems when inspiration strikes, and her poetry has been published in The Indian Review, Contemporary Literary Review of India and ‘A World Rediscovered’ a poetry Anthology by Cyberwit Publications. Yamini draws material for her stories and poems from the world around her. When she is not converting her experiences to stories or poems, Yamini reads, plays with her toddler, and fools around her laboratory, that is, the kitchen.
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Spotlight on The Runaway Bridegroom by Sundari Venkatraman

Spotlighting Sundari Venkatraman’s new book ‘The Runaway Bridegroom’


Sundari Venkatraman


Chanda Maheshwari’s family is shaken when her thirteen-year-old bridegroom Veerendra runs away immediately after the wedding. The eight-year-old child doesn’t even understand the impact on her life. Unable to face their neighbours and friends, the Maheshwaris move from their village to Jaipur and begin a new life in the city.
Fourteen years later, Chanda is studying in a Delhi College. She takes up a temporary job at RS Software Pvt. Ltd. and falls head-over-heels for the boss of the operation. But what about  Ranveer Singh? Is he interested in her?
Ranveer’s secretary Shikha is desperate to make him fall for her. All she wants is life-long security with a rich man. But it’s nerd Abhimanyu who keeps getting in the way. Abhi is Ranveer’s second-in-command and Shikha isn’t keen on him as she’s eyeing the main chance. 
When Ranveer appears to show interest in Chanda, she’s faced with a new problem. Astrologer Vidyasagar insists that she would get back with her husband Veerendra. Does anyone want to know what she wants? 
Chanda feels torn between the man she has fallen for and the family values that have been instilled in her. Will she ever find happiness? 
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Meet the Author
Sundari Venkatraman has authored four ebooks so far, The Runaway Bridegroom being the latest. Three of her books, namely, The Malhotra Bride; Meghna and The Runaway Bridegroom have all been self-published on Amazon under the banner of Flaming Sun. All three books are regularly seen on Amazon’s Top 100 Bestsellers’ Contemporary Romances list. 
A great fan of Mills & Boon romances over the past four decades, Sundari has always believed in ‘Happily Ever Afters’ and all her books promise happy endings. 
The Runaway Bridegroom talks about ‘Child Marriage’, an evil perpetrated even in the 21st century in a country like India. While a large number of the country’s population live in the cities and lead modern lives, there are many who follow old customs unaware of the negative impact on the lives of the younger generation. 
The book is a work of fiction and of course does not preach. The author has but made an attempt to bring this ancient custom to the eyes of the modern public around the world while bringing a simple solution to the protagonists, the victims of child marriage. 
“I hope you enjoy reading the book as much as I loved writing it,” says Sundari Venkatraman. 
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Get to know author – Adiana Ray

Please welcome author Adiana Ray on my blog today. Let’s get to know her through a question and answer session.

Q: Tell us something about yourself and how you got into writing?

I come from a large family and absolutely love all the noise, confusion and camaraderie. Have two children below ten so they keep me really busy. Moved around a lot and that greatly influences my writing. I have always enjoyed reading and writing and did the usual school and college magazines etc growing up. Then got a business degree and writing fell by the way. It was my publisher Indireads, who asked me to submit some story ideas, which I did and it just took off from there. It was a pleasant surprise of how much I enjoyed putting my stories down once I started, like coming back to an old trusted companion.

Q: Your experience of writing a book – easy as pie or hard as nails?

Somewhere in between. There are parts which are a breeze and other times when nothing happens and that can be quite frustrating.

Q: What motivates you to write?

Real life. There is just so much happening around us all the time and one continuously comes across people whom you can know nothing about but you can take one look at them and think to yourself ‘this could be a great tale.’

Q: What inspired you to write this book?

The character of Sonia, who has created her own little niche in the big bad city. I used to live in a working woman’s hostel in Mumbai when I first started working and there were so many girls like her over there. Young women who had to come to make a career in the metro. When I started with that premise I wanted to create a hero who was the antithesis of her and then I thought I should take them away from their normal surroundings and see what happens.

Q: Please describe your book briefly.

‘Rapid Fall’ is the love story between two young, urban professionals from Mumbai. J.D is a successful, self made man, currently the head of a media company that he has built from scratch. Divorced and cynical, he finds it hard to let his guard down and let anyone come close to him. Sonia is still naïve in her honest approach to relationships and finds herself struggling when she faces the intense attraction she feels towards J.D.

Both of them meet in Rishikesh on a white river rafting trip and like the turbulent river, they are tossed and thrown about by their emotions for each other even when they come back to Mumbai.

It is their journey to find each other and accept and embrace the love they share.

Q: Tell us about the main characters in your book.

JD is the charismatic head of a media company. A true Mumbaikar, he works hard and plays hard. After an acrimonious divorce he would rather play the field than accept what his feelings for Sonia really are.

Then we have Sonia, who is a professionally qualified young woman who has to come to Mumbai from a smaller city. She also takes great pride in her work but at the same time struggles to fit in with some of the more sophisticated lot in her office.

My main aim was to make all my characters very believable. They could be the couple sitting next to you at your favorite restaurant.

Q: How do you overcome writer’s block?

Turn off the internet, get myself a big mug of coffee and just keep typing out stuff, till something clicks. Sometimes it could take me days.

Q: Does writing get in your way of life?

I wouldn’t say ‘get in the way’ but would rather go with ‘makes up an important part of my life.’

With two young children it is difficult to just sit down and write and I do get torn between doing my writing or spending time with them. Besides sometimes when I am doing other stuff I find myself going over scenario’s and dialogues in my head.

Q: What’s next in your writing plans?

Well hopefully finish all my work in progress and there is a whole bunch of stuff that needs to be done. What I would like to do too is write more fiction under my pen name M.X Steele. I have published a few short stories already but I would like to go with a full length novel as well. Under that pseudonym I explore darker themes in my fiction and I would be interested to see where that goes.

And here comes our rapid-fire round:

Your favorite movie

Zindagi Na Milega Dobarra

The worst movie you’ve seen

Inception….had no clue what was happening.  Jism 2 #####

Any secret habit?

I love talking to myself esp. when writing dialogue.

Actor you’d fall for in a heartbeat.

Used to be Daniel Craig…still looking for his replacement.

Favorite book.

Very, very, difficult. The opening scene of Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier has stayed in my mind despite the passage of time, so I would go with that.

Fallback option when the fridge is empty

Haldiram’s Bhujia Sev

What comforts you when things go bad?

A hot cup of instant coffee.

Your most comfortable outfit

A khaddar kurta over a pair of chinos.

Great answers, Adiana. Lovely to know how you cae into writing. I agree the opening of Rebacca is quite haunting. And yes, I loved Zindagi Na Milegi Dobarra too.

This post is a part of blog tour hosted by The Book Club


Rapid Fall


by Adiana Ray


The Blurb
  Sonia and JD’s tempestuous attraction is as stormy as the rapids at Rishikesh. Not even a dip in icy waters can douse the sparks that fly when they are around each other.

JD’s recent divorce, however, has left him commitment phobic and bitter, and he doesn’t seem to want more than a physical relationship. At heart, Sonia is conservative; can she bring herself to accept a modern ‘live-in’ relationship, or will she push him away with her demands for a commitment?

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Meet the Author


The Author’s Thoughts


‘Sixteen and counting’ are the number of cities that I have lived in so far. I like to think of myself as a ‘Metronaut’. The myriad city cultures, the food, the hustle and bustle, the people are all elements of life that I thrive on and if you can have an ‘Astronaut’ why not a ‘Metronaut’ after all there are so many more of us out there?I believe in the Zen tenet that every situation has a 1000 truths. It helps me write and it definitely helps when I am dealing with my two children. I like reading, I like cooking, I like travelling and I love sitting like a mindless zombie in front of the TV and if anybody says anything to that….Aha! a 1000 truths come in very handy.

I also write under a pen name M.X Steele. Why? My daughter thought Adiana Ray was too boring a name.

I do hope you enjoy reading all my work because I believe passionately that though we writers love pontificating and are totally in love with whatever we write; at the end of it all it is the readers that matter and above all what we write has to be ‘entertaining’.

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Get to Know – Author Ruchira Khanna

Today I have on my blog author Ruchira Khanna talking about all things writing and life in general. Please give her a warm welcome. Let’s get to know her through this question-answer session.

Q:Tell us something about yourself and how you got into writing?

Officially trained to be a biochemist, and worked in the lab for approximately ~7 years. Then could not step out of the home after the delivery of my kid. Blame it on the emotional attachment. Mind was at rest while at home, and could think beyond me-myself, which initiated the awareness around me. This was the foundation or the stepping stone of writing a few words each day. Thus, a writer was evolved.

Q: Your experience of writing a book – easy as pie or hard as nails?

Honestly, I did not plan much for my debut novel. I joined in the wagon of NaNoWriMo with a concept of Destiny. Now, call it fate for myself that my thoughts could evolve while writing in the month of November into a 50K words novel.

Q: What motivates you to write?

Pain, Agony is my motivator. I get goose bumps when I see them around, and unfortunately there is plenty thus, motivating me 24/7.

 Q: What inspired  you to write this book?

This topic is close to all our hearts. We all wanna venture onto a path that will lead to happiness n success. But, then it is either dependant on our kismet or the choices we make. Thus, the concept came up!

The society is my inspiration. So far, all have either cribbed/vented over this issue. Thus, thought of tackling it with a story that can help calm our heart and mind over the choices we make in our respective lives.

Q: Please describe your book briefly.

Book Choices gives us a peek into the lives of Mateo and Albert on the choices they were forced to make, but are happy to make a life out of it, and help sustain the expenditure of  their families. It gives a brief look  into the lives of immigrants on how these men over the turn of events are prepared to cement their passion out over their responsibilities and their priorities.

Then I take the reader upon the journey of a young boy, Leonardo, who has a passion for something. His whole life revolves around that strong interest, but along the way he comes at a cross-road that makes him ponder over the fire within versus the stuff that gives him joy and satisfaction.

I hope the reader can connect with those thoughts!

Q: Tell us about the main characters in your book.

Leonardo is a young boy who got to see a lot of harsh realities as a kid, thus he has no apprehensions but to look within and concentrate on his passions and make sure he fulfills them. The book takes the reader on a journey of this boy’s life where he reaches the crossroads of life, and he has to make a choice with regards to his future.

 Q: How do you overcome writer’s block?

I do nothing about it, and actually enjoy that empty space within me!

 Q: Does writing get in your way of life?

I need my space when I write. Thus, weekends are my most challenging time to pen down words. I used to vent about it, but now I have just given up writing over the holidays.

 Q: What’s next in your writing plans?

Working on a novel that encircles around hope!


And here comes our rapidfire round:

Your favourite movie:

The worst movie you’ve seen:

Psst…I am very bad in remembering things thus, cannot pin point towards favorite or worst movie. 😦

Any secret habit?:

Would not be a secret anymore 😛

Actor you’d fall for in a heartbeat:

Sidharth Malhotra

Favourite book:

Many; since all books have something unique to relate to.

Fallback option when the fridge is empty:

Parle-G Biscuits

What comforts you when things go bad?:


Your most comfortable outfit:

Kurta Pyjama


Thanks for being on my blog, Ruchira. Definitely like your choice of favourite actor! Recently saw Ek Villain and he certainly took the floor.

It was lovely having you here. All the best for your book!

This post is for the blog tour for Choices hosted by The Book Club


Choices by Ruchira Khanna

The Blurb
Leonardo is a young man who is standing on a crossroad of life, facing choices. One road leads to a high stress career that brings in big bucks; the other is a chance to make a real difference in lives of others. He has a few questions, questions that all of us have faced when facing choices that can change our lives. Does fate make a man, or do his desires? Do ambitions and desires actually lead a person to true happiness and fulfillment, or does providence and life changing events actually show a person the true path to follow?
‘Choices’ raises these questions, and attempts to answer them. It is a slice-of-life, a book written from the heart.(
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Meet the Author
Choices: A Novel talks about how we all come to crossroads in our respective lives, and then the impact it makes by a choice we make.

A biochemist by profession made a mere choice of enrolling myself into a technical writing course. Now, little did I know that this small decision would take me on a path to creative writing and eventually publishing a novel.This novel, Choices helps answer many questions about man’s ambitions and desires and how is it a road towards happiness and contentment that could eventually become your destiny. This is a “slice-of-life” genre thus, impacting all humans who have made a choice sometime or the other in this lifetime!

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