“But to get to these fascinating nuggets, I need to combine the wide-eyed curiosity of a child with the patience of a saint.”- author Usha Narayanan
Today on guest blog post we have the popular mytho-fiction author Usha Narayanan whose latest release Prem Purana is gathering accolades among the readers.
Mythological love stories are very fascinating and are enjoyed by all age groups. However, the information is not easily available. Please share with us your experience in researching your material.
Thank you, Paromita, for featuring me on your blog and for the lovely question! To me, a mythological novel like ‘Prem Purana’ resembles a Gandaberunda, a fabulous double-headed eagle with a glorious tail resembling a peacock’s! Both the story and the bird are powerful and spectacular. Also, both convey beautiful lessons that guide humanity in every age. Temple carvings portray the Gandaberunda’s role in the eternal chain of life and death. A deer is swallowed by a python which in turn is captured by an elephant. A lion attacks the elephant but it is devoured in turn by a Sharabha, a form of Shiva that is part lion and part beast. The Gandaberunda, a form of Vishnu’s Narasimha avatar, then subdues the Sharabha. This is quite an interesting and thought-provoking tale!
But to get to these fascinating nuggets, I need to combine the wide-eyed curiosity of a child with the patience of a saint. Libraries, research institutes, online resources, visits to temples and historical sites, shops near them that sell booklets in the local language – everything provides food for thought. I travelled to Pancha Dwaraka, the five cities associated with Krishna, in order to write ‘Pradyumna: Son of Krishna’ and its sequel ‘The Secret of God’s Son’. When I have assembled a mass of material, I sift through the various narratives in different languages and different puranas. Every curse, every battle, every birth often has twenty variations. For instance, Ganesha has no wife in the south, but two or three in the north. I chose to go with three wives – Siddhi, Buddhi and Riddhi so that I could create distinctive characters for each of them and also devise colourful challenges for Ganesha to woo and win them!
I always take the path that excites me, the one that is unfamiliar and therefore more interesting. Or I create my own story and fit it carefully into the puranic ones, like a bard adding his own flourishes to the narrative handed down by previous generations. The ultimate aim is to excite the readers, to keep them turning the pages and finish reading with a sense of satisfaction and a smile. I hope ‘Prem Purana’ has succeeded in doing this!
Readers, please remember to leave a few lines on Amazon and Goodreads once you have read the book. I’m waiting!
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