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Posts tagged ‘writing’

Interview at Metroreader blog

Here’s an excerpt from Metroreader Author interview, where I was hosted by Arti.

 

Author Interview Series: Interview 2: Dr Ruchi Vasudeva

IMG_487577035865659 (5)Dear readers,

On the interview today we have Dr Ruchi Vasudeva. She can be described as a doctor by profession, a teacher by vocation and an author by destiny. Her inspiration to pen a story came, when as a teen, she read a call for manuscripts at the back of a Mills and Boon novel and began to plot and write. She wanted to do English literature and medical studies for her graduation with almost the same amount of enthusiasm. However, the writing dream got lost while she pursued medical studies. Years later, a contest held by Harlequin for Indian authors gave her a golden opportunity to have her dream realized. She debuted in August ’13 with ‘Bollywood Fiancé for a Day’ and this was followed by ‘You can’t fight a Royal Attraction’ in December 2013 by Harlequin.

Thank you so much, Ruchi, for this interview, I really appreciate your taking time out from your busy schedule.

At the outset, could you please tell the readers about yourself?

Thanks for having me on your blog. You have capped most of the info in my bio. Writing has always been a hobby but it wasn’t till I began to write with the effort to get published that I realized how tough it really is. Understanding the craft which is a never ending process is difficult in itself and getting published traditionally is definitely a challenge but in addition to that nowadays authors have to concentrate on marketing as well, so actually it is two professions combined in one. Maybe, more. So it was a shock that the leisure time was almost gone and in addition had to give up on many things which annoyed a lot of people I can tell you. It took a while to find balance and to tell you the truth it’s still mostly tilted. Time management is the toughest thing to face if you add writing to the life you’re already living.

You always wanted to write, how does it feel to have two titles published in five months?

Absolutely fabulous. When you have the book out there – had to pinch myself many times – people actually buying it, nothing can beat the feeling! Two books out one after the other was a stroke of luck one can just thank the stars for. Definitely I’ll always savour the feeling!

Did you have writer’s block?

I did, a couple of times during the writing of the first book. That’s when I realized that writer’s block is nothing but laziness combined with the inability to properly understand

the characters’ motivations. I’d read back on all that I had written and usually found that I was able to get back on the track. With the second book, I had a tight deadline and nothing was permitted to stand in the way. Maybe the experience I had garnered during the writing of the first book helped.

I know it is difficult for an author to choose between her books, but which of the two, is closer to your heart?

It is difficult but now that you’ve asked, I’d pick You Can’t Fight A Royal Attraction. That story seemed to simply flow from my fingertips, and I really enjoyed writing Rihaan and Saira’s steamy interaction

Any special/ favourite character from among Vishakha, Zaheer; Saira and Rihaan?

While all of them are quite special to me – they’ve been talking in my head for so long! – however Zaheer is quite a favourite. The readers too comment that he’s quite captivating. I like that he has an answer to everything while putting a different spin on the given situation.

What were the challenges faced while writing the book?

Mostly time. When the story is humming in your mind, it’s hard to tear your mind from it and concentrate instead, on the daily life business. However one has to accept that however your Muse would like to, you cannot finish a project in a day…Also writing has to take a backseat to mundane but unavoidable routine!

The other challenge was coping with the direction of the story in which characters seemed to take charge early on. The vague plan in my head went ashambles but I’m not complaining because the final product was better than I imagined 🙂

How do you manage to take out time to write from your busy schedule?

I started by writing after work and on weekends. I have quite a bit of time when I commute so I shifted my files onto my BlackBerry and was able to type on the go. That really added to productivity. I learnt not to wait for the scheduled time for writing. I’ve written in the bus, in the car, the kitchen while waiting for food to cook, even jotted down ideas while in a queue. I’ve written rough drafts of 9-10 books this way. Let’s see when they alight in front of the readers.

How do you manage to take out time to write from your busy schedule?

I started by writing after work and on weekends. I have quite a bit of time when I commute so I shifted my files onto my BlackBerry and was able to type on the go. That really added to productivity. I learnt not to wait for the scheduled time for writing. I’ve written in the bus, in the car, the kitchen while waiting for food to cook, even jotted down ideas while in a queue. I’ve written rough drafts of 9-10 books this way. Let’s see when they alight in front of the readers.

Read the rest here http://metroreader.wordpress.com/2014/07/03/author-interview-series-interview-2-dr-ruchi-vasudeva/

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Writing process blog tour: My Writing Process – Ruchi Vasudeva

Hi everyone! Today is Blog Tour Day. This blog tour is where writers answer questions about their writing process (or in other words – head banging 😉 at least for me!)

YA author and dear friend Sheritha Singh posted about her writing last week. You can check out her writing process here.

Here’ s how I eke out the words on my keyboard and what’s going on in my writing these days. Cue here a picture of a big ponderous tortoise to get an idea of my speed 😉

What am I working on?

Right now, I’m writing a story about college lovers who separated due to their different life choices and now are finding their way back to each other again. They have to work past their differences which are quite a truckload.

How does my work differ from others of its genre?

It’s a romance, a contemporary one. It is different for me in the way these characters are opening up to each other, layer by layer – excuse the metaphor 😉 The romance is going to test the emotional limits of these two especially the hero. He has avoided facing what he grew up with and if he wants things to work with her, he’s going to face some tough choices. The question is, can he do what it will take to win her back?

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Why do I write what I do?

Honestly I don’t know, that’s the way ideas begin to unroll for me. I see the beginning of the characters in people and situations in the world around me and the trails people are facing, then a combination of different ideas makes the story roll. Sometimes it’s an uphill struggle, like this story. I just had to write one short scene in a park and somehow it took me two days to get it done because I couldn’t find the point of that scene, though I knew it had to be there to get from point B to C. I like to read romantic stories so maybe that’s why I write them. Having grown up on a diet of harlequin and also historicals and the classics, my stories do tend to be a mixture of escapism combined with groundedness. Or so I’m told 🙂

How does your writing process work?
I wish there was a process! For me writing rarely happens in the way of smoothly churning out words. It’s more like sketching, shading, shaping and filling in colours, adding hues and then putting the tiny signature at the corner. I get down the basic idea and work on it over and over to smooth out the unreasoning parts. Thankfully, I have now cut down on jumping ahead and writing the future scenes first. Because that used to really make me rewrite a lot. Now I just keep doing the touch ups till the editor pronounces it done.

Thanks for reading about me. Next week catch the writing process of these authors:

Adite Banerjie — Adite is a screenwriter based in New Delhi, India. She turned romance author when her first Harlequin romance, The Indian Tycoon’s Marriage Deal, released in 2013. Her second book, Trouble Has a New Name, comes out in July 2014. She loves to travel, watch movies and play with her Irish Setter when she’s not stuck to her computer struggling with her current WIP.

Reet Singh — Reet, a medical professional, has a romantic soul. Most of it is probably inherited from parents who have loved each other dearly forever, but a lot is attributable to the romantic fiction she devours by the kilo. When she’s not doctoring people, and when she is not writing, she watches romcoms on the telly, does creative things with wool and a crochet hook, struggles with the daily crossword or with online Scrabble. Occasionally, she can be found in the kitchen putting together her ‘world-famous’ one-pot meals – world famous because family scattered all across the face of the earth has, at one point or the other in their lives, encountered a meal that they couldn’t guess the constituents of, but found finger-licking good nevertheless. Married for three decades, her prototypical tall, handsome, and sensitive alpha-husband still makes her heart skip a beat. Writing about love and happy endings feeds her romantic soul and brings to a full circle her love affair with Mills and Boon®, from reading them ardently to writing them. Reet’s website is http://reetsingh.in. Write to her at reetsingh.author@gmail.com; tweet to her at @AuthorReet.

Aarti V Raman — Aarti lives in Mumbai, India and has a degree in mass media from Mumbai University. She has always dreamed of being either a writer or a lawyer and decided to pursue a writing career from a very early stage.
Aarti has already published a romantic thriller under the name Aarti V and has more works coming out in 2014 with Harlequin and Knox Robinson. Her childhood dream of writing romance (contemporary and historical) has finally come true and she hopes to continue this fantastic journey with many more love stories and fascinating characters. Aarti loves to watch movies, TV series and read other romances and travel to different places in order to find a new hero and a new story. She loves to hear from her readers. You can contact her at www.facebook.com/aarti.v.raman or her blog at www.williaminashakespearewrites.blogspot.in or on Twitter @Rt_writes

Do let me know how you found the idea of the blog tour and this post. Bye for now!

Let’s talk Nanowrimo a little while longer

Did you take part in Nanowrimo? So what was your experience? Are you the one who has come away chest puffed out with pride, a swagger in your walk and brimming with confidence in your writing? Or are you the one who’d run away screaming if the word happened to be mentioned within your hearing?

Here is what I came away with from taking part in Nanowrimo.

First, I think it’s worth taking part in it and yes, I think every writer should, if only as an exercise in disciplined writing. There’s nothing like it in putting writing to the forefront of your mind and not just let it be one of the things in your to-do list, as it happens to become. Even the most dedicated writers find ways to get distracted in today’s world, all too easy, at least for me, so enrolling in a must-do competition is definitely profitable to your productiveness.

The important lessons I took from Nanowrimo, and in winning it – yes, didn’t I mention I made it? well, I did 🙂 – are these :

Muse was no longer moody

This was one of the surprises Nano sprung on me. At around the midway point I was doing it half-heartedly, not sure I could do it with the things I had on my schedule. I was around 13k words in and I thought this was the moment when I had to either really try or let go of it and attend to ‘life’. So making a decision, I got to it, with no clear planning of the story. A wonder happened. Instead of my muse retreating under pressure, it became like tiger with a prey. Let me at him. Words came easier the more I progressed, failry spilling onto the screen till the keyboard chatter became music to my ears. Well, sort of. It felt nice to say 😉

Random things put in tied up

Miracles happened. What else could I call it? I hadn’t the faintest idea about the end of the story. Then the last day a light bulb moment occurred to devise the end. I just put in something random like khanabdosh ie gypsies – can’t get more random than that, can you – and it yielded result. It tied in perfectly with the hero’s plan and also made the hero action oriented. The pieces just fell in place.

Didn’t make time, generated it 

That’s what it felt like. I began to look for writing moments actively and scribble away whenever I got time. I wrote no matter what, charged by coffee, comforted by chocolate. I wouldn’t say I got disciplined because that means being organised in your whole day. which I definitely wasn’t. But giving no attention to the daily hassles of everyday world, which did a fade out as soon as my fingers touched the keyboard, I was off. And getting lost in make-believe felt better and better. Though, it isn’t what I can afford to do every month or even every other month, for getting writing done in heaps, it works.

Cheers count a lot

I learnt that company matters. The online group writing sprints, or just catching up and reporting progress, it all helps. Accountability is the trigger of discipline after all. If you have folks cheering you on, nothing better. In fact I couldn’t have made it without my Wrimo group friends egging me on.Thanks, folks! 🙂

So what’s your take on Nanowrimo? Should or shouldn’t? Did you attempt? If you didn’t, why not. What are the advantages or disadvantages of Nanowrimo? If you had taken part, would you do it again next year? Why or why not? Let’s talk Nanowrimo for a little longer…

Five tips for Nanowrimo success

It’s that time of the year again. Nanowrimo begins! Soo many of us are gearing up to take part. Are you?

I’m going to share here five tips to meet the furious demand of churning out words and win the coveted badge.

Before you ask, I haven’t won Nanowrimo. Not once. Well, I participated just that occasion. But I have finished 30000 in less than 15 days.  *takes a bow* Twice I’ve also managed  >40k in a month. Of course there are people out there writing more and even more speedily. What can you do to raise your word count, even when you have work and home demands which can be shelved for a short time but not totally ignored? Here are my tips for speed writing your manuscript.

Plan

For some people planning makes them feel more organised while some feel it crushes their creative freedom. However, planning at least the roughest idea of what your book is about, where do you want it to go, etc. will give you a framework of your story. You do plan what genre to write, don’t you? You also plan the location of your story, the characters’ jobs etc. At least during the initial stages of your woriting. So also plan the main dips and curves ahead. Even die hard pansters who ‘wing it’ will find it better going if they have some idea of the main pivotal points and definitely more than an idea of the characters. Their goals. Motivation. Conflict. Otherwise you might find your inkwell and your imagination well drying up before halfway through the month. Might. The advantage of planning is that you still have something to sink your teeth into in those rushed times when your muse gets sluggish. Get your characters charted out. As I mentioned in my short story tips post, one important incident at least from each of their stages of life will help you know the character better.

Choose the story you’re most excited about

What is the thing you have to talk about? The tale it’s ultra important to tell? You can only write when the subject moves you. When you’re bursting to have a go at it. Get thinking. Experience. Find what echoes with you and gets you…no, zings you right into the story world.
If possible write 20-25 pages beforehand. That gives you an idea where you should start the story. I don’t think it’s cheating 🙂 Write them then bury them in some other folder. Start afresh on first November.

Ignore the internal editor

This is self explanatory. It’s very, very easy to get caught in the fatal embrace of internal editor. So it’s crucial that you don’t start with the revision process while you’re writing. This happened to me when I first joined Nano. I went back and read what I wrote and tweaked and tweaked some more…and then I didn’t like this…didn’t like that…it went on and that story is still only 15 pages done 😦 So ignore the temptation to make it ‘just’ a little better. December is waiting to get all that done.

Don’t expect all days to be fruitful

Certain days are bound to be better. I’d write 4k one day then sink to 350 the next. Don’t fret about it. Go catch a movie or read a book. Some days are unproductive; you just can’t help it. But indulging ‘off days’ might be just a case of allowing your imagination the lubricant oil of rest. Once the mind settles, ideas start to filter back. Look out for my upcoming post on writers’ block on how to nurse your creativity back to health. 🙂

Don’t mull on it all the day

You’ll get bored if you keeping things of nothing but your WIP all your waking and sleeping hours. Ultimately, you might start to hate it. It begins to seem like work, instead of fun which it started out being. The moment you get up from in front of the keyboard, try not to go back over what you’ve written. If something brilliant comes to mind, make a note. But don’t go over and over a problem again. If you’ve run into a figurative brick wall, go out and do things in between. Fill your muse with inspiration. Most of us rehash, because when you get a load of writing done, it seems like the most exciting thing in the world but take it from one who did it too many times. Thinking too much about it, spoils your story. Yes, it is the antithesis of my previous planning advice but still it has to be said. Plan what your next scene is going to be within an hour or two of your next writing session. Not before.

Of course all advice in writing varies from individual to individual in its usefulness but these are the general tips to keep you on track. A bonus piece of advice. Don’t limit your writing to your official writing time. Carry your current chapter on your phone, notebook, paper napkin ;)…anything which works for you! In those moments when you have to wait for food to cook, travel somewhere, in the waiting rooms, during lunch break at office…seize the opportunity and scribble. That’s a covert and effective way of building word count. 200 words short sessions pile up into big ones and you get that feeling of achievement which is a spur to do more and more!

Good luck to all Nanowrimo participants all over the world. Go make your manuscript happen.

Did you find these tips worth pursuing? What are your own speed writing secrets? Have you ever won Nano? What most helped you make it? Do share your views.

Link

My interview on the Readdicts’ blog

My interview with one of the Readdicts, Janhvi

Author Interview- Ruchi Vasudeva (Bollywood Fiance For A Day)

Hey guys! Today we have with us Ruchi Vasudeva, the author of Bollywood Fiance For A Day for a fun interview. Do check it out 🙂
AUTHOR INTERVIEW:
 
1. Tell us a little bit about yourself.
 
I’m a medical professional who lives in Punjab with my husband, two kids and in-laws. Somehow I fell into writing and after much churning and rechurning out of words, my debut book was released this year. I also turned Professor of Physiology and thus August ’13 has become a landmark for me in both my careers. It feels really exciting to have made this far.
2. Describe your book, Bollywood Fiance For A Day in 140 characters or less.
 
She’s been jilted. He’s a superstar out for fun. He drives her crazy with annoyance till she  discovers that he has vulnerabilities too…
3. How did you decide to write Bollywood Fiance For A Day? What inspired you?
 
It’s hard to pinpoint exactly how it came into my mind. I was writing a story for the Passions contest held by Harlequin. I had this mental image of a girl who is facing an actor under the glare of cameras and is scared of them. Then the background of another story in which the heroine had been jilted merged into this and poof! I had the heroine true to life in my mind. I sent in the story and luckily I won the contest! Along with other prizes, came an opportunity to develop the story into a novel….read more at the blog http://thereaddicts.blogspot.in/2013/10/author-interview-ruchi-vasudeva.html

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