Thursday 3 November 2016

Questionnaire with Swarupa Chavan

So, for this month  featuring  author from Indian Literary                                 world  is Swarupa Chavan

I am a Mumbaikar by birth and heart. My schooling was from Mary Immaculate Girls High school. I am a Science graduate majoring in Physics followed by MBA & Computer Technology. I am a rank holder in Packaging Technology. Professionally I am a Deputy General Manager with a leading Agro Chemical Mfg Co and head the department handling Strategic Sourcing.
I am an ardent nature lover and enjoy spending my time in the midst of nature. I love travelling and exploring new places, experiencing the various cultures and places. Reading and writing is my passion. I feel I have discovered my true self and my purpose in life through writing.

Questionnaire with Swarupa Chavan

1.      ​How did you first get involved in with writing, are you an imaginative person?

I have always been an avid reader and a writer since childhood.  I started off with writing short stories and articles for school and college magazines and realized that I was loving it immensely.  I decided to channelize my creative energy by penning down my thoughts. That’s how my first novel To Err is Human was born. From there on there was no looking back, I had tapped into the writer within me.

2.      What do you find most challenging about your writing?

I find it challenging to find the time to write. Once I start on a particular project my mind is brimming with concepts and ideas of how to build the characters, how to take the story forward, what incidents to jot down, so on and so forth. However, with the hectic work life that is very demanding I do not find the time to maintain the continuity of my thoughts.

Another problem is the writer's block which every writer faces at some point or the other. The duration of this block varies from individual person and their circumstances. I have also faced it several times. Initially I would find it frustrating when I was unable to write a single word. Eventually I found that this phase was beneficial for me. Since after the block was cleared I would come out with even more fresh ideas and concepts. I started making use of this phase for recharging my innovative idea tank.

3.      What do you do when you are not writing?

For a writer, the not-writing phase does not exist :) They are either writing or thinking about writing. The next book, the plot, the character building, the scenes, the dialogues ... they are constantly planning it. If not consciously, then through their experiences in day to day life. As they travel, meet new people, or go through an otherwise ordinary day they are writing their experiences in their minds. Once a writer, forever a writer :)

4.      Where do you see yourself in the next 6 months, and 5 years down the road?

I have a lot of dreams and goals in life. Both professional and personal. A lot to be achieved, a long way to go. I have realized that goals and dreams keep changing with every phase of life. As we meet new challenges, as we keep growing with every experience our priorities keep changing. We should not get caught up in any rat race and forget to live in the moment. You need to set standards against your own previous achievements and strive to better your own self. Become a better version of yourself in all aspects of life. Slow down a little and enjoy the small joys of life which make the bigger picture. You never know where life would take us the next moment, so make the most of today. Having said that I do keep my focus on my dreams and move one step at a time towards achieving it.

5.      How do you keep coming up with material / content for your story?

The locations in my novels were places which I have visited earlier, which aided me to give it a more realistic feel. I do a lot of research on the concept on which I am working. For example, my latest novel THE PREDICTION is based on the power of precognition, predicting the future. I did a lot of research to understand the scientific implications and the symptoms of this power. Building the plot and weaving a story along these concepts is the beauty of creativity. Giving life to characters and making them close to real life, helping the readers relate to them comes to me naturally.

6.      Any specific tips you have for new writers who want to make it big in the world of published books?

I would say just one thing – Follow your heart. Be original in whatever genre of writing you are comfortable in and write that. Do not get into the trap of imitating novels or author's styles which have a vast readership. Also, getting your work published would require you to be persistent and patient.

7.      What’s the best thing a writer can give to his readers?

To influence the reader's thought process, change the perspective, motivate and uplift their spirits, take them to the world of the story they weave, make them feel the feelings, move them emotionally through the protagonist, make them relate to the story is the sole purpose of the writer when she is writing her story. With every word she is pouring a bit of her soul in the story. The novel could be fictional, but the feelings are real, the thoughts are her own. So if she can reach out to the reader’s heart with her words and leave a lasting impact on their minds with her work she has achieved her purpose. To leave them feeling better after reading her work is the best thing a writer can give to a reader.

A lot of people are interested in writing for the money earning potential. What are some tips for people interesting in making money from writing? What are some realistic expectations in regards to what can be made?

I am not the right person to give tips to people who write to earn money ... hahaha :) I write to follow my passion. Honestly I am unable to focus much on the marketing and promotion of my work to gain more readerships.

8.      What motivates you most in life?

I can say I am a self-motivated person. The drive to keep doing better in whatever I am attempting, comes to me from within. I want to become a better version of myself with each passing day. I feel grateful for all the things that I have in my life, starting from life itself. We tend to take most things for granted. Feeling humbled and grateful for all my blessings and making the most of the gift of life keeps me motivated.

9.      The majority of the readers tend to take sides due religion and such other considerations?

There are several authors who write non-fiction, maybe based on religious genre. It is the responsibility of the writer to not hurt any emotional or religious sentiments of the reader if they are writing on such topics. At the same time, the readers should remember that what the author is writing is his perspective and opinion which he is expressing through his writings.

10.  What is the story behind the name of your book?

If I talk about my latest novel, THE PREDICTION – the title clearly suggests that the story revolves around the concept of precognition or knowing the future.  Its tag line – SHE COULD SEE THE FUTURE – again strengthens the idea that the protagonist of the story is bearing this unusual power of predicting the future. I selected the title to depict the core concept of the story and how the one Prediction which the protagonist makes changes the course of everybody's life in the story.

11.  What are your views on increasing plagiarism?

It is extremely sad that Plagiarism is on the increase. As simple as picking someone else's status quotes/ posts / poems and posting them as their own on social media to copying/ modifying stories and publishing them as their own has become extremely common. Any creative work is hard work of the writer and she is entitled to the ownership of her work. People should discourage such activities by immediately bringing it to the notice of others whenever they observe plagiarism being followed by anyone. Taking accountability and responsibility to make the literary field a more creative world is the responsibility of every writer and reader.