India’s only real action-adventure thriller writer
An author of fast, high-octane thrillers, with the immersive experience of a big-scale movie – only this one unfolds across the pages of a book.
"Always write the stories that you would love to read; anything other than that, and your readers will call you out."
What inspired you to take up writing?
Michael Crichton's Jurassic Park captivated me. I recall imagining the power of escapism that an author wields over his/ her readers... and I wanted that power. I grabbed a single-ruled school book, and hand-wrote my first story in it. That was the beginning.
Are you a full-time author?
Not yet... its definitely a dream. It's important to keep writing, honing my art, without worrying about that question.
Which is better: to be traditionally published or self-published?
There isn't one correct answer. The publishing industry is going through a transformation with the proliferation of eReaders, online stores, and self-publishing. With a multitude of self-publishing options, the playing field is levelling out. I am self-published, and I find it liberating: I set my pace, and tell the stories I want to. Traditional publishing does have a strong marketing and distribution chain. But I wonder: how long before they offer bespoke services to self-published authors?
Do self-published works suffer from quality deficits?
In comparison to traditional publishing, perhaps. But the trend is declining. There are numerous services that can come to an author's assistance. Self published authors also realise they must churn out quality, and are getting better at taking matters into their own hands. I believe that our connected world of 'likes' and 'rating' systems make it easier to sift the good stuff.
Do you plan your novel before writing?
I prefer the organic approach, in which the story develops as I write. That's not to say, I don't have way-points to guide me.
Have you visited the locales described in your books?
How I wish I could visit them all. I use travel blogs, photos, tourist videos, maps, Google Street View, Google Earth extensively. I usually start off with Wikipedia and then spider along. Definitely, being to a place enhances the emotion and tone of the description. You'll notice that with Secret of the Scribe (Egypt), The Apocalypse Trigger (Bonn, Germany) and the third Ingram book (no spoilers yet).
You mentioned Michael Crichton as your inspiration. Who are your other influences?
I look forward to books by James Rollins, Steve Berry, Matthew Reilly, Lee Child, Dan Brown, Scott Mariani, Andy McDermott; the Dirk Pitt series by Clive Cussler. Recently, I've been exploring unfamiliar territory with the help of this fantastic recommendations newsletter by bookbub.
Do you use specialised software to write?
Not really. It's Microsoft Word, Notepad and cloud services for accessibility.
Do you send your manuscripts to publishers?
It's an ongoing activity, one that is independent of my story-writing. What I mean is, I'm going to write regardless of what I hear from publishers or agents. I started with shared publication of Haunted and Secret of the Scribe. Nowadays, it's all self-published because I don't fit into the plan of agents.
Which self-publishing services do you utilise?
I use Pothi and Amazon KDP for Print on Demand; Pronoun and Draft2Digital for eBook publishing and distribution. In India, you need to request for a print ISBN from Raja Rammohan Roy Agency. (Unfortunately, Pronoun is ramping down in 2018)
Physical book or eReader?
eReader, hands down. I can carry my entire library with me everywhere, read in awkward bodily contortions, read more than one book at a time. And not to mention the savings in storage space.