I will never forget the day I received my first fan email from a young girl in Mumbai—that was when it really sank in, that I was a published author! – Adite Banerjie
Let us welcome today the most popular romance writer, Adite Banerjie, the author of bestsellers Trouble Has a New Name, The Indian Tycoon’s Marriage Deal. Coming from Bollywood background her books is said of have a tinge of Bollywood Masala flavour in them. She is also the source of inspiration for many aspiring writers and is followed by a huge fan base. Today in the interview she discloses her journey as a published writer and her upcoming book.
- You started as a business journalist. Did novel writing just happen or was it planned?
Novel writing was a happy accident. It so happened that I came across an ad for the Harlequin Mills & Boon Aspiring Authors Contest and I decided to send in an entry. To my utmost surprise, my 2000-word short romantic story was selected as one of the winners. And as they say, there was no looking back after that. Converting that story into a full-fledged novel was a memorable experience and made me truly appreciate just how much hard work goes into writing a book.
- With list of successful romance books, Trouble has a new name, Indian Tycoon’s marriage deal, under your arm do you intend to write out of your comfort zone someday?
For me, every book has its own set of challenges. So far I have tried to explore different sub-genres in each of my books: The Indian Tycoon’s Marriage Deal is more of a romance-drama whereas the Trouble Has a New Name has a chick-lit feel to it. My third book, No Safe Zone, is a romantic-suspense. Frankly speaking, when it comes to writing fiction, I really don’t have a ‘comfort zone’. I am always nervous that it won’t work out on paper as it is playing in my head. And that worry is what makes me one very anxious writer! J
- Tell us something about your upcoming book?
No Safe Zone is a romantic suspense. It is the story of Qiara and Kabir. Qiara is a London-bred child rights activist who will do anything to save her mentor and their NGO, Girls Rock!, from ruin. Even if it means visiting the city she had vowed never to return to. But within a few hours of landing in New Delhi, she is being chased by a gunman and is a potential suspect in the murder of a high profile businessman. The only person she can turn to for help is Kabir, the man who stood her up ten years ago. The story starts off in London but the action takes place in New Delhi and Rajasthan.
- Tell us about your pillar of support in your journey as an author?
I’m very lucky to have been able to choose my own path, career-wise. During my growing up years my father was a huge source of inspiration. He was an extremely creative and talented person who worked in the film industry. He was totally obsessed about telling stories and I think he transferred a bit of his obsession to me. My mother is a voracious reader. So stories—be it through books or movies—have always been an integral part of my growing up years.
When it came to deciding on a career, it was a no-brainer that I would opt for something related to writing—and so journalism happened. I have had many mentors who have shaped my writing and my attitude towards writing. When I made the switch from fact to fiction, my peers became my mentors. I learned from their experiences. At every step I found that those who are the most talented are also the most generous when it comes to sharing their knowledge. Some of them are screenwriters, some are writing coaches and others fellow-authors. I have immense admiration for their mastery over their craft and their dedication to writing. So my journey as an author has been made up of my own personal experiences as well as all that I have gleaned from my interactions with other immensely creative people. It has been a wonderful journey and I feel extremely fortunate that I have found support at every step.
- There are many aspiring writers who are looking forward to have their debut book published traditionally. Your books are published by Harlequin. Share your experience of publishing your debut book?
As I mentioned earlier, it all started with a contest. Publishing is a tough business and getting your book published is not easy. So I consider myself immensely lucky for having got the opportunity to have my work published by the top brand in romance novels, Harlequin. The mentoring that they provided was invaluable and helped me find my feet as a romance writer.
- Family has always been an integral part of an author’s life. Please tell us about your family.
My husband is my biggest fan and also my biggest critic. He is a writer himself and when I need to thrash out something or get feedback on my work I know I can rely on him to give me nothing but constructive criticism. He also understands the ups and downs of the writing life. So I feel blessed that I can count on his constant support and encouragement.
- It is said it is the readers who make the author. Share an experience about your reader/fan base.
It is always a thrill to hear back from readers, especially when they love your books! LOL.
Every writer claims that they write because it is a passion for them. True, writing is a passion. But if it weren’t for readers, it would all be so pointless. I write stories so that someone will read it and be entertained by it. If they can immerse themselves into the world that I have created and forget their real life worries even for a short time…I think that itself is reward enough for me. I will never forget the day I received my first fan email from a young girl in Mumbai—that was when it really sank in, that I was a published author! 😀
- Adite, you have long been giving your views on social issues through your blog post or through online platforms. Tell us about your other interests apart from writing books.
I am a big movie buff. And I also feel strongly about women’s issues and animal’s issues. These are the things that I love to discuss on online platforms. I also love to travel and experience new places and taste different foods.
- A few lines for the aspiring writers.
A good writer needs to read a lot. It’s said that you should read in the genre you write. But I feel the more diverse your reading is, the better writer you will be.
- Our readers would love to hear from you.
Thanks Paromita for your thoughtful questions and the opportunity to connect with your readers. I would love to hear from them too.