Readers are our oxygen. All I could ask them is to read more and more of our books and drop in mails – Paulami Duttagupta
Today we have with us one of the brilliant issue based fiction writer Paulami Duttagupta. Some of her acclaimed books are PINJAR (2012), FAMILY MATTER (2013) Ri Homeland of Uncertainty (Adapted from the National Award Winning Khasi film by the same name) and the new release A THOUSAND UNSPOKEN WORDS.
- Tell us about yourself as a person.
Now this is the most difficult part. Am I supposed to say good things? 😀 I am incredible lazy, so much lazy that if I efficiently get past all my set targets I pat myself on the back. I am also a little on the introvert side and sometimes romanticize the idea of a loner. Am also kind of minimalist and do not expect much from life. Good food- at most times unhealthy, a steady supply of films and silence makes recipe for a perfect day.
- What inspired you to be a writer?
I’ve always been writing. In my childhood I would write a lot of ‘Once there lived a king’ stories, but at that point of time there was little exposure. Later while in college I would line up for competitions on essays, quotes, stories and even once had tried poetry. Needless to say there were no prizes for my bizarre poetry. In my final year I was also one of the student editors of the college magazine. Then there was a little of writing dramas for AIR- Shillong.
That was one of the most exciting phases of work life. It was followed by stints as feature writer in a plus edition of TOI and The Shillong Times. But the break up with writing was really long. I did not write for almost four years. And then I got inspired by a very filmy serial in one of the Hindi channels and started writing Fan Fiction. As I had a readership base who wanted me to post chapters on a daily basis, it became a routine. After writing almost for a year, the idea for my first novel came up.
- How would you like to describe your journey so far, as an author?
I still feel I have barely begun. Both as a scriptwriter and as an author. There is so much to learn, so many stories to narrate. The journey has been fulfilling but also challenging. From delayed book contracts, rejection slips, royalty cheques that have never shown up there’s been an entire bunch. But this journey has given be lovely editors, publishers and reviewers who have given be useful tips that have largely helped me to grow as a writer. Some of them have even become friends.
- You have long been associated with Bangla Television industry (ETV- Bangla, Akash Bangla and Sony Aath) and movies. Tell us something about your new venture in that field.
Televison was fun, though more stressful. And my work profile was something I always dreaded. Numbers and formula! Media analysis was challenging, waling up early on Wednesdays and churning out data…the phone calls from seniors and colleagues all wanting to know how the channel had done for that week, that is something I miss now. Also for Sony Aath I would make the entire program schedule for the month, so it was very challenging. If the TRPs wouldn’t rise, I could only blame myself. Maybe I don’t miss that part.
- Your books PINJAR (2012), Family Matters (2013) Ri Homeland of Uncertainty are associated with issue based subjects. Could you please tell us more about your writing style?
I like reading a lot on politics, history of the subcontinent and cinema. So ultimately these are the topic that I end up picking.
- Tell us about your forthcoming book.
A Thousand Unspoken Words’ is my next. The lanes and bye lanes, the famous yellow cabs of Kolkata, Bengali cuisine etc formed the images in my mind. And then it was my characters Riddhimaan and Tilottama who made me write the story. These characters are a little complex, they love, but they judge too. They are not exquisite characters, rather very much like the people we see around us.
- What do you consider the biggest challenge in writing?
Disciplining a mind that is always eager to run in a dozen directions. Routine is necessary.
- Any message that you would like to give to our readers and aspiring writers.
Aspiring writers should realize that any form of art is not easy. One should be prepared for heartbreaks.
Readers are our oxygen. All I could ask them is to read more and more of our books and drop in mails. There is nothing sweeter than reader feedback- be it positive or negative.
Follow Paulami :Goodreads
Buying Links : Amazon