It's time for another author interview, and today our brave interrogation subject is Indian romance author, Anjum Awasthi Malik!
PB: Hi! Welcome to pjbermanbooks.com. Tell us a bit about your background.
AAM: My name is Anjum. I grew up in Punjab, India. At present, I am residing in Noida. I am an engineering postgraduate. Presently I am a full-time mom and part-time author. So far, I have written three books, and currently, I am working on my next.
PB: What made you decide to become an author?
AAM: I had this weird habit of imagining stories since I was young. Just one anecdote of conversation on my ear was enough to initiate a full story. I never told anyone because I found it abnormal. I mean, who carries imaginary people and their problems in their head? It never occurred to me that I could pen them down too. The first spark of writing the book began when I started reading, which was about five years ago, but still, I could not muster the courage to follow that path. Having studied technical books most of my life; it was not something I was supposed to do. Was it? At least, that's what I thought then. One day I came across an interview of a famous writer who had the same habit of imagining stories, and to get rid of them he started writing them. It's then I realized that it was a trait of a storyteller and not an abnormality. I decided to give it a try.
PB: When did you first start writing?
AAM: I started writing my first book in 2017, and it took me around 6 months to complete the book.
PB: What was the first story that you can remember writing?
AAM: 'The Twist of Fate', my first book, was the first story that I had penned down. Before that, I only wrote poems.
PB: When you begin writing a new novel, do you always know the ending?
AAM: In the beginning, I do have inkling about how the story will end, but when I reach a point in the story where characters get their own mind, I lose the control, and then it is the characters that start leading me towards an end.
PB: If you could meet any of your characters, who would you meet, and what would you say to them?
AAM: I think I have already met all the characters in my head and also had long conversations with them. Much more than what is reflected in the actual book. They may be fictitious for the readers but they are as real as the people around me.
PB: Where did the idea for this series come from?
AAM: As I said earlier, I had the habit of weaving stories. Once I watched an upcoming movie’s trailer and concocted the story in my head. When I actually watched the movie, I told my husband that the story in my mind was way better than the actual one. He jokingly told me, "Why don't you write it then?" That’s how the seed of ‘The Twist of Fate’ was planted.
PB: Tell us about your recent novel, Those Eight Hours with Her.
AAM: Sometimes when we are going through a lousy phase in life, we meet someone who says or do something that changes our perspective towards our current situation. This is the idea behind this story. It doesn't matter how much time we spend with someone, sometimes a moment is enough to alter lives.
PB: Of all your achievements, which are you most proud of?
AAM: The day I became mother, that’s the moment I am most proud of. You might laugh, but that was the only moment when I felt like I have done something that no one else has ever done.
PB: Don't worry, as a father myself, I know what a special day that is! You've brought a totally unique human being into the world. It's a beautiful experience. But I digress. What is your favourite book series to read and why?
AAM: It’s so difficult to choose one when there are so many wonderful books. I am not very fussy when it comes to books. I mostly read fiction. Give me a well written and engaging story, and I will end up liking it. I like reading stories that portray the true emotions and the situation where I can imagine myself. It forces me to think about how I would have reacted if met with the same kind of circumstances. There are plenty of books that had made me think that way.
PB: What are your long term ambitions with regards to writing?
AAM: After my first book, I never thought I would write the second. But my readers’ response to my first made me write another story. To be frank, it’s new territory for me and I am just going with the flow for now. I have no idea where I would be in future as a writer, but I do know that I still have several stories in my mind, and I plan to write them all.
PB: If you weren’t an author, what career would you be in?
AAM: I am an engineer by profession, and writing is my hobby. I do not see writing as my profession, because writing is my way of releasing emotions and I want to keep it that way. I know, the moment I start seeing it as my profession, I will start finding another way to release stress.
PB: What’s the next target for you?
AAM: Currently, I am working on two books. One is the part two of 'Those Eight Hours with Her', which I am writing from villain's POV and I am quite excited for this one. The other one is mystery/romance.
PB: Tell us a random fact about yourself.
AAM: I am quite resilient; I take pleasure in everything I do. But I am also fickle, once things get monotonous, I start getting bored. I enjoy everything that keeps me close to creativity, but nothing can hold me for long. Sometimes I like this tendency of mine because it makes me explore different fields, but sometimes it irritates me too.
Thank you so much to Anjum Awasthi Malik for talking to us here at pjbermanbooks.com today!
If you would like to purchase any of Anjum's books, you can do so here:
Until next time, happy reading everyone!