In metro cities, life runs faster than metro trains. People infused with multipronged ambitions work day and night to make things work. In all this, relationships face the worst part of such rollercoaster lifestyle. People begin hating people whom they loved months ago. Our author Shreya Prabhu Jindal has encompassed urban relationships with its all kookiness in her Book Simply Complicated. In this interview, she has answered tough questions relating to urban relations.
Anant: How do you come to write about the complicated relationships of young professionals living in metro cities?
Shreya: I write what I know, what I see and observe around me. I have always lived in big metro cities and my friends are young professionals- as am I. So it made sense to write about the complications that exist for that age group.
Anant: There are similarities in you and your characters like the alma mater and professions. Did you see these characters as real people in your life?
Shreya: Yes, many of them are based on people I know and come from a similar background to myself and my friends. The professions are very typical ones for young working people, and so are the kind of problems they are faced with. But beyond that, they are all fictional characters.
Anant: Do you really think two couples can live happily despite the bitterness and regular fights?
Shreya: I think it depends on the couple. How much are they willing to try and make it work? I think that if the couple is happy on more days than they are fighting, it’s worth it. It depends on the kind of people they are.
Anant: Do you think it will be easy for a girl to behave with someone as a friend for whom she had got real feelings? Can such feelings be curbed for the sake of anything even friendship?
Shreya: This happens all the time, everyday. Everyone has crushes which aren’t returned, and people struggle to get over their exes and remain friends with them. Behaving normally with an old friend, even if you have developed feelings for them, isn’t that hard!
Anant: Which character was closest to you and why? I believe she was Astha!
Shreya: Yes, Aastha, because I am always playing the role of the single friend who’s giving relationship advice to others. But that’s where the similarity ends. She can be very judgmental and irritating- something which I hope I’m not.
Anant: Did you intentionally give Rahul’s character a gray shade to make him relatable and real?
Shreya: Rahul was initially supposed to be a complete “douchebag” with no redeeming qualities, but when I started writing from his perspective I had to change my portrayal of him. He is as human as any of the other characters. They all have their flaws and problems- none of them are perfect.
Anant: What have you just finished reading and what are you reading now days?
Shreya: I am reading fanfiction based on Harry Potter and the popular TV show, Sherlock. I don’t have too much time for reading, so I end up reading fanfiction in my spare time, since I prefer that.
Anant: Please tell what qualities of a book makes you read and reread with one example please?
Shreya: A good book should have strong characters, memorable dialogues, and a conflict or crisis that the characters have to work to fix. This is a formula which works for every genre- from The Fault in Our Stars to Harry Potter!
Anant: Please share this book’s journey from an idea to a paperback. Hope it will help young writers.
Shreya: It takes a lot of work to write a book. Getting the ideas in place is the easiest part. After that you have to force yourself to keep writing at least 300-400 words on days when you might be feeling very tired or uninspired. You can only succeed as a writer if you’re able to keep writing regularly.
Anant: Please share how was this interview round? You can pinpoint which question is good and which is boring.
Shreya: The advice to young authors and the questions on what inspired me and the journey of writing the book were great, but you shouldn’t be too specific about characters and situations in the books which people reading the book might not have read. Otherwise, it was a good interview.
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