Thursday, June 6, 2013

Featured Author: Rakesh Ranjan

Rakesh Ranjan is the author of Requiem: Will the Dead Come Back for Love? a novel that includes spirituality, mystery, and romance.

About the book:

Requiem is about love although it doesn’t look so until the latter half of the novel. It is the story of the unfulfilled love of the narrator. It is about Death, Love and Life. There are mistakes that a person makes but love often persists. And when it becomes so integral to your existence, you always tend to go back to it. It may haunt you in a sense but is often the sweetest memory that you carry. Requiem introduces Death as the beginning of a life beyond Life. Despite the vagaries it is associated with, Death can be a fascinating aspect of Life. It then moves to Love and describes how the two persons met and fell in love. And before love surmounts everything, one often loses to lust. Requiem details that journey of love. Requiem portrays Death and Love as the two continuous pursuits of man. While one fears the former, they always want the latter. Requiem shows how imagination can be a twisted reality. It shows the conflicts inside a human mind. The novel is written in a simple language and is an attempt to connect with the masses.

Interview with Rakesh Ranjan:

Welcome, Rakesh. Do you have another job outside of writing?

I finished my MBA and will soon be joining a top technology consulting firm.

How would you describe your book in a tweet? (140 characters or less)

This story of Death, Love and Life will enchant you and I promise you will end up with some tears. I’ll be disappointed otherwise.

Excellent! And with ten characters to spare! How did you create the plot for this book?

I think I had the idea long back. I luckily started writing and everything came together.

What do you do to market your book?

I have relied on the word-of-mouth thing and expect people to recommend my book to others if they find it good. I also aim to connect with readers with this blog interview. If my book intrigues them, they may go for it. I have just started but feel that the good reviews I have been getting will lead to more people getting to my work.

What would your main character say about you?

If Amy were to speak, she would say how much she loves me and misses me. If I say more, the mystery of the novel will be revealed. But Amy is wonderful and whatever she says would be the most precious words for me.

With which of your characters would you most like to be stuck on a deserted island?

It has to be Amy. It would be the most romantic and rewarding experience of my life.

Tell us about your favorite scene in the book.

I obviously started loving Amy. The novel is about her. The scene in the first chapter of the last part, 'Life' is very close to me. I cannot disclose the scene because it reveals a mystery. I cried a lot while writing it and every time I read it. A reader told me how he could not resist crying there. I feel I have succeeded when people say that the narrative is touching.

Who are your favorite authors?

Ayn Rand and Paulo Coelho

What book are you currently reading and in what format (e-book/paperback/hardcover)?

I am now reading the Bhagavad Gita on my Android phone. It’s a spiritual work, an amazing one. The concepts of Karma (duty) probably came from here.

Do you have a routine for writing?

I don’t write in a routine. For me, it’s more like getting my thoughts out and so when I feel like writing, I write at a stretch. While writing this one, there were times when I had not slept well for a few days but would make arrangements to keep myself awake for another day so that I could continue to write. I would then rest for a few days and restart when I had the material in mind.

Name one thing you couldn’t live without

I would love to see my parents around forever, for as long as I live.

If you could only keep one book, what would it be?

The Fountainhead

What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

I love meeting people and experiencing cultures. Traveling is such a rewarding feeling. I have seen most places in Europe. All countries there are so beautiful. I have also been to some countries in Asia. And I have a lot to see. I need to see the remaining continents.

What are you working on now?

My next work is a fantasy. I would like to test my boundaries. I hope I can continue to bring joy to others.

Excerpt from Requiem: Will the Dead Come Back for Love?

A bolt from the blue

I could see the gloom on their faces. My relatives seemed to be mourning and they looked shocked. I had no idea why they had all assembled there. It looked very strange and I guessed something was wrong. My sister and cousins were crying. My uncles and aunts looked in deep agony too. I went looking for my parents. I then found my father at the front door. He seemed absolutely devastated. Something like that could happen only when everything had gone wrong. It was like a scene from a movie and it seemed as if someone had died. I sensed some disaster had struck my family and ran towards the room where I found my mother wailing in agony. A streak of fear gripped me. I dashed off to our maid, who was standing nearby, to enquire about the matter. I asked her why everyone was so sad and ended up getting a cruel shock. She did not hear me and so did not even react to me. Annoyed, I shouted in anger and realised that none of them could hear me. No one even seemed to realise my presence. Something had gone horribly wrong. Why was not anyone noticing me? As if I had no body, no existence and hence no relevance to the people! Restlessness and fear started overpowering me. What was that? Why was it so? I pushed my sister out of desperation but she did not feel anything either. Reality dawned upon me soon. And yeah, I could now understand why my parents were in a state of shock. They had just lost their only son. I had died and preparations were on to consign my earthly existence to flames.

About the author:

Rakesh Ranjan is an MBA from Management Development Institute (MDI), Gurgaon and Edhec Business School, Nice, France. He will soon be starting his job with a top technology consulting firm. He is an engineer and has a pre-MBA work experience of two and a half years. He has stayed in different parts of India and traveled to places in Asia and Europe. He loves traveling and experiencing cultures. His experiences have helped him write. He is a keen observer of human behaviour. His interests are varied and he tries to find meanings in ordinary things. He has wanted to write for a long time. The idea of writing a novel came to him in the first year of engineering. And he decided to do it now, after almost eight years. His poem, ‘My Love, My Life’, was very popular in college. He has blogged a bit before and has also written some articles.

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