She loves to read sitting by the window, watching the soft rains falling and sipping Darjeeling tea. She did a solo trip of Europe and UAE. She is a practising Buddhist and met Dalai Lama as a child and also sat on his lap. Did this make your eyes shoot up? Well, that’s not all.
She is a typical Leo – stubborn, lazy, ambitious and fiercely independent, and jokes that her husband has a hard time keeping up with her. She is an introvert with lots of friends (an oxymoron if you think about it). She has ataxophobia – a fear of disorder and untidiness. (Doesn’t it remind you of someone from a very popular American sitcom of the 90s?)
Meet Balaka… MPhil and Masters in Mass Communication and Comparative literature. Professional content writer and instructional designer. Not many know that she was diagnosed with a rare autoimmune disease called interstitial cystitis. However, she did not let it deter her. She went ahead and started a patient forum to help IC patients and is an active campaigner in spreading awareness about IC.
What is the significance of Golden Rainbow?
All of us meet a variety of people in our lives but in most cases we do not try to listen to their stories. We are too busy telling our own stories and often ignore the stories of others. Therefore, in Golden Rainbow I deliberately chose to tell stories of 26 people whom I met at various stages during the four decades of my life. These are not heroic tales but ordinary stories of ordinary people; nevertheless, they are not uninteresting. Some of them will make you laugh out loud while others may make you cry. Most of the stories are rich in emotion, empathy and compassion.
Which character from your book has touched or influenced you the most? Why?
Just like for a mother it is difficult to choose her favourite child, for an author also it is difficult to choose. To me all of them are equally touching and all of them inspired me. No wonder they found their way to my book.
Smart reply! 🙂
Do you plan to write about more such real-life characters in the near future?
What are you currently writing on?
I am going through some kind of a self imposed writer’s block at the moment due to my extreme laziness.
What would you advise to people who want to write on real life characters?
Try to be compassionate, empathetic and non-judgemental while writing about real life characters. Show them the way they are without adding your own judgement.
Great response, Balaka!
What’s the greatest obstacle you faced in writing and publishing your first novel and how you overcame that?
Honestly I did not face any obstacle. It happened smoother than I expected.
If you are allowed to keep only 3 books in your book shelf, which ones would they be?
This is an extremely interesting question. I am a bibliophile and it is difficult to choose. I guess Gitabitan by Rabindranath Tagore, One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez and God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy.
How do you overcome writer’s block?
My writer’s block is in most cases due to my lazy nature. I just try to push myself in those days. My head is always bubbling with ideas but it is my laziness that stops me from writing them down. Once I sit with my laptop 90% of my battle is won.
Share tips on publishing and marketing your ebook.
I am still learning, too early for me to give tips.
Throw some light on how you research while writing.
By simply observing people.
Golden Rainbow is a book of memoirs that has been curated with stories from the author’s life. People she met in her life’s journey are the protagonists. Some stories will make you laugh and others may make you cry.
Amazing reviews by some amazing people:
Golden Rainbow is available on Kindle. Grab your copy today.
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