Born in Kolkata, Rajnish Gambhir, of “A Passion Beyond Extremes” fame recently published his 2nd novel Honour For A Ransom. He is a Commerce graduate, currently working as a full-time Director with a Corporate House in Kolkata. He also owns a frozen yoghurt store at Forum mall in Kolkata, names “Yoforia“. He loves listening to the lilting melodies of the seventies, with the unique combo of Kishore Kumar, R. D. Burman, and Gulzar, always featuring on his playlist. A splendid writer and a father of three, let’s get to know what ticks Rajnish-
- Tell us something about your recently published book Honour For A Ransom!
The novel narrates heartfelt love stories involving three generations from the early twenties up to the mid-eighties with a very relevant historical backdrop. It exposes the horrifying realities of our rigid caste system, centred around ‘honour killing’. Simran, a twenty year old newly wedded bride is gunned down along with her lower caste husband by her own father Kartar Singh on the dawn of Baisakhi in order to ‘uphold family honour’. The actual mastermind to the ghastly murders is Dilawar Singh, her egocentric and politician grandfather who happens to be a survivor of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre which took place also on the day of Baisakhi. Though sixty years apart, there is an ironic connect to both these incidences which makes my novel stand out uniquely!
- It does stand out uniquely, no doubt! When did you start writing?
I always had a passion for writing poems and short stories (right through my school and college days) but my work was confined within my personal diary. It was only in 2007 that I took a decisive step forward to start penning my first novel – “A Passion beyond Extremes”.
- What is the purpose of your writing?
To experience that immense satisfaction of following my passion. Writing also immerses me with my ‘larger than life’ characters that I have so fondly created. Honestly, nothing could relax me more!
- What inspired you to bring forth this idea of Honour For A Ransom as a book?
It was during 2009 (when I was midway through my first novel) that I came across a series of horrifying newspaper reports involving young innocent couples being murdered allegedly by their own family members for the sake of upholding family honour. These disturbing reports inspired me to address this barbaric issue of ‘honour killing’ and what better way than through an intriguing novel!
- Is any part of Honour For A Ransom inspired from real life?
It is a work of fiction based on the social evils of our age-old caste system that is prevalent in many parts of our country till today.
- Do you see a movie based on Honour For A Ransom being made?
‘Honour for a Ransom’ is a heartrending love story that is infused with poetry. The protagonist (Kartar Singh) is a literary man who writes soulful romantic poetry! Plus the novel unfolds through significant events of our Indian history such as the Jallianwala Bagh massacre, the Nationalist movement and partition, avidly capturing the Punjabi culture during the pre and post independent India. Yes – according to me, the book does have great potential and an engaging content for being made into a Bollywood film.
- I second that thought. It’d be lovely to see a movie based on HFAR. What is your idea of love, family and relationships on the whole?
Love is the greatest creation of God – the purest form of emotion that must be treasured, whether in a relationship or within a family or amidst friends. Significantly, my novel explores love in all three spheres but there are obstacles such as ‘family honour’ and other social issues which vitiate the power of true love as the novel progresses. Will love eventually surface above these hindering issues is for the readers to read the book and find out!
- Which of your works have been published so far?
- A Passion beyond Extremes – a Romantic Thriller published by Leadstart in 2012
- Honour for a Ransom – a love story published by Leadstart in 2016.
- So how was this journey of becoming a published author?
Challenging yet fulfilling! Writing a novel is a big challenge in the first place and then finding a publisher is an even bigger one! But nothing is more fulfilling than a reputed publisher accepting your work; it’s like a deserving reward for the hard work that was put in! Plus a great feeling that your creativity has been duly acknowledged! Nothing came easy though – despite being rejected by many publishers, I kept up my nerves before my book was finally accepted for publication by Leadstart.
- What should the beginners do today?
First and foremost one must have a quality story to tell. Next, the characters you create must be well sketched – defined enough to shoulder your story and relatable enough to touch the reader’s heart!
- That is a very valuable piece of advice for the newbies. What is your take on book publishing as you see the current scenario?
Competitive but it is there to stay. I believe in the simple philosophy that ‘knowledge is power’. To gain knowledge there is no better medium than books. And as they say, ‘knowledge is endless’ – there will be continued demand for quality books, ensuring that book publishing forever thrives!
- What are your forthcoming writings?
Besides promoting ‘Honour for a Ransom’, I am working on my third novel which will be a romantic thriller, although it is still in the initial stage.
- Interesting. What are the four top most things you take care of while writing a book?
- Basic plot
I have the first three clearly chalked out before even embarking on the first chapter. I try to ensure that every chapter and the segments there of ends on an inquisitive note – prompting the reader to eagerly seek what’s next. This is important in order to maintain an engaging flow of the story being told.
- I could witness all of this in HFAR 🙂
What is your favorite genre and why?
Romance. “A Stone for Danny Fisher” by Harold Robbins is still etched in my mind although I must have read it at least three decades ago! Mystery novels by Agatha Christie featuring Hercule Poirot also are a part of my reading list.
- If you had to live a day of your life as one of the living or dead personality, who would it be and why?
Rajesh Khanna as I’ve been his die-hard fan since boyhood. I would love to enact Mere dil mein aaj kya hai from Daag for that treasured day of my life!
- *Laughs* And finally, any message for the readers?
For an author, it is a blessing to see his book in the hands of a reader. I wish to thank all my readers from the bottom of my heart for all their love and support!
So that was Rajnish Gambhir for you, author of “Honour For A Ransom“.
You can get in touch with Rajnish directly at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact Madhuri for your author interview and getting your book reviewed / edited: email@example.com
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