Amit Sharma is the author of fiction novel titled False Ceilings by Lifi Publications. The book launch happened on 12 Jan 2016 in the World Book Fair in Delhi. The novel is a Family Saga spanning 130 years (from 1930 to 2065) and takes us through the lives of six protagonists who are bound by a secret and live in Delhi and Dalhousie.
Amit Sharma has been working in a Software Firm since the last ten years. He lives with his family in NCR. His wife is a teacher and they are blessed with a daughter with an amazing battery life.
Amit is a voracious reader and devours books. His other hobbies include watching world cinema, travelling, digging into various cuisines, cooking, listening to music, painting, blogging (he used to blog earlier at Mashed Musings), making his daughter laugh and helping his wife with her unnecessary and prolonged shopping.
Thank you Amit for taking time out for this interview.
From a reader to a writer, how did this transformation happen, please tell us about it?
Well, I am still a reader and always will be. Writing was an addition. I was introduced to blogging by a friend in 2007 and that is how it started. Over the years, I developed the confidence to write as people started appreciating my blog. Then readers started questioning about my imaginary book. I laughed it off initially. I had a story in mind but no confidence. Then finally one day, I decided to give it a try. And that is how False Ceilings was born.
How difficult was it to write a book in which the story is spread over 135 years?
The only thing that I was scared of before I started writing was the amount of research it will entail. I was very sure that I won’t write a single sentence until I was satisfied with my research.
The story begins in 1930, in the pre-independence era and touches many historical events. I amalgamated the story with our history and made a few events as the turning point in the life of the characters. The timespan of 1950s-1970s was something my parents helped me with. I had long discussions with them to get the lifestyle of that era right. The story takes place in Delhi and Dalhousie. I had to display changes both the places went through over the decades. It was a research filled with challenges and surprises. There is so much we don’t know; so much we ought to know.
Have you ever suffered from writer’s block?
Not yet. I almost stopped blogging when I started writing the book mainly because I could not juggle both with my day job. But I haven’t suffered from writer’s block yet. I have multiple story ideas churning in my head right now.
What kinds of books do you read? Who is your favourite author and what is your favorite genre? Has any author influenced your writing?
I read books that make me stop and think. That is one reason I do not have a favorite author or genre. I don’t think a single writer has influenced me but you do absorb a lot subconsciously. Here is a list of a few of my favorite books –
- Everything is illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer
- The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
- Roots by Alex Hailey
- The Brief wondrous life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz
- The Orphan Master’s Son by Adam Johnson
- Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut
- Middlesex by Jeffery Eugenides
- Kafka on the shore by Haruki Murakami
- Night Train to Lisbon by Pascal Mercier
- Night Film by Marisha Pessl
Which book are you currently reading?
Currently I am reading “The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera”.
What is the next project that you are working on? When is the next book scheduled for release?
My next book is almost done. It has gone through a round of Alpha reading. I will be sending it out for Beta Reading in June and then start pitching it.
It’s a very modern story and spans eleven years. It’s about the journey of Sapna, a girl who belongs to a lower middle-class family living in Delhi; how she transforms from a naïve, simple-minded, college-going girl to the most influential, richest and powerful woman in the world. She has a gift that turns her into a Goddess; someone the world fears and prays to. Her power changes the course of the future but is she able to cope up with the sacrifices it demands? Or does the power consume her in the end?
It’s quite different from my first book and I am hoping the readers will enjoy the story as much as I enjoyed writing it.
Any word of wisdom for aspiring authors?
Research, polish and market well. I am learning the ropes too but these three aspects of writing as very important. Don’t rush into writing. Research for your book well, spend time chalking out your characters. Have a complete outline before your start writing. Once you are done with your initial draft, keep polishing it till you are satisfied with it. Give it to your friends who are avid readers and ask for opinions. Keep aside money for marketing. You have no idea how difficult is that going to be.
Thank you once again for sharing your thoughts with your readers.
Social Media links of Amit Sharma for readers to find/follow/like:
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org