A Chartered Accountant, Company Secretary and Bachelor in General Law, Shri Bala is a multi-talented lady. Her debut novel “Y? Me” hit the literary world in 2013. before debuting as an author, she was contributing to weekly and monthly magazines. She is currently employed as Head of Finance of an organization in Chennai where she resides with her Architect husband and two adorable daughters. Her hobbies include playing carnatic music on the violin, cooking, arts & crafts — especially glass painting. Let’s get to know her more –
- Tell us something about your book Y? Me.
This book is a common man’s angst against the social apathy and also because of the social apathy how a person’s personal life due to cascading effect.
- When did you start writing?
I conceived the thought of writing this book in 2010 but never told anybody that I want to be a writer for reasons best known. End of 2012, the thought process was so strong that I discussed with my friend and he encouraged me to write. I finished in April 2013.
- Friends indeed have a great influence on us! What is the purpose of your writing?
I love reading and writing and have a flair for it. I thought that the common man can would be able to connect with the emotions and feelings expressed in this novel.
- What inspired you to bring forth this idea of Y? Me as a book?
26/11 really affected me and for several weeks I was thinking of the victims and families. It became an inspiration for me to write this novel.
- Is any part of Y? Me inspired from real life?
26/11 in a real incident, the story, however, is fiction.
- Which of your works have been published so far?
Y? Me is my debut novel.
- Do you see a movie based on Y? Me being made?
I definitely see it as a movie as it is fast paced and witty.
- What is your idea of love, family and relationships on the whole?
Love is a vital ingredient for a relationship which goes on to becoming a family.
- So how was this journey of becoming a published author? Give some insights of your efforts on getting your work published.
I have come a long way as an author. Getting my first book published with the publisher was an upheaval task. I have more rejection letters than acceptance. Three publishers accepted my script, of which I went ahead with Leadstart Publisher Mumbai.
- Three is a huge number when it comes to manuscript acceptance 😀
Have you self-published your book or followed the traditional approach?
I took the traditional approach and once the contract ended with the publisher I e-published with daily hunt.
- Which approach is better according to you and why?
Traditional Approach because it is time tested and the publishers take marketing as their responsibility. This makes it easier for the books to be featured in famous book shops.
- What should the beginners do today?
Irrespective of success or failure, keep writing if you want to be an author.
- What is your take on book publishing as you see the current scenario?
The market is very dynamic and current scenario is very challenging. Gauging the pulse of the market is very important. What the readers want is one of the important aspect for being successful.
- What are your forthcoming writings?
I have made a compilation of short stories with a working title – “Beyond Me” and a novel titled “Crystal Maze” which is a business tycoon’s saga. I am also working on a cookbook.
- Wow! I eagerly look forward to these books, especially the cookbook 😉
What are the four top most things you take care of while writing a book?
- Gripping Plot with twists and turns
- Reader’s connection to the plot
- Pace of the novel
- What is your favorite genre and why?
Love, human emotions are my first preference – as I said before love is a vital ingredient for life, be it with parents, life partner or children. Romantic Thriller is my second preference.
- What / Who is your biggest source of inspiration in life?
Swami Vivekananda and my uncle (Late) P S Sankaran.
- What is the biggest challenge you have ever faced and how did you overcome it?
Not getting admission in college inspite of having a good score due to reservation/quota system. Subsequently I was lucky enough to see my name included in the second batch – call it god’s intervention.
I lost my father in 2013 and in 2015 lost my mother to Cancer. 2014 & 2015 were emotionally bad years I pulled along. That is the reason why my second novel took a back stage. 2016 stars are shining as I did a South Indian Vegetarian food festival with Trident BKC Mumbai and more opportunities as guest chef is in offering and I am working on finishing my books.
- If you had to live a day of your life as one of the living or dead personality, who would it be and why?
Swami Vivekananda – I am an ardent devotee of Ramakrishna Mutt and love swami’s teaching and thought process.
- And finally, any message for the readers?
Always yearn for knowledge because that’s the only asset which cannot be taken from us by anybody. It only grows and evolves as we grow older.
So that was Shri Bala for you, author of “Y Me” and a multifaceted lady.
You can get in touch with Shri Bala directly at: email@example.com
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