Welcome, dear readers, to another fun Author Interview and an awesome Giveaway post!
This time, we have with is author of the alternative fiction novel, Once Upon The Tracks Of Mumbai, Rishi Vohra.
The author has kindly answered all our questions and has generously offered to give away three copies of his book to three lucky Indian readers.
Without any further useless banter on my part, we'll quickly move on to the post I have for y'all.
You can find out more about Once Upon The Tracks Of Mumbai at the following links:
ABOUT RISHI VOHRA:
Rishi Vohra recently relocated back to Mumbai after completing a Green MBA from San Francisco State University and a Masters Diploma in Environmental Law, prior to which he had a successful career in the Indian Entertainment Industry. After featuring as a guest columnist for various newspapers in India, he currently writes for delWine and is a Certified Specialist of Wine (CSW). 'Once Upon the Tracks of Mumbai' is his first novel.
Hi Rishi! Welcome to The Readdicts! It is great to have you on our blog an we hope you have a nice time answering our questions.
1) Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I have grown up in the city of Mumbai and have done my schooling at Bombay Scottish and Junior College at Jai Hind. A Bachelors degree in Finance (with a minor in Theatre) and Associate degree in Film took me to the U.S. for my undergrad. Upon graduation, I chose the filmmaking route and worked for a good amount of time in the film, television, music video, and live event industry. My interest in the social and environmental sector took me back to the U.S. for an MBA. And now I’m back to where I guess I belong!
2) Tell us about your book, Once Upon The Tracks Of Mumbai.
‘Once Upon the Tracks of Mumbai’ is an alternative fiction. The story-telling style is different from the usual commercial mass fictions in the market, as is the subject. The story revolves a 24-year-old autistic protagonist and follows his journey from hopelessness to hope. Of course, there’s humour, drama, and the other masala ingredients of a commercial fiction. And it’s not just a love story!
3) Babloo is a very special and unique character.
What inspired you to write about him? Is his character, in any way, related to someone you know or is he completely a product of your imagination?
My interactions with friend of mine with similar problems prompted me to create Babloo’s character. But beyond that, Babloo is entirely a product of my imagination. However, his character was shaped up after intensive primary and secondary research of the mental disorders attached to his character.
4) Your book shows the way of life in Mumbai- the real picture.
Did you need to do any particular research to get the Mumbai picture right?
(eg. the railways, the "roadside Romeos", the night life, etc.)
I grew up in this city. And the book depicts the Mumbai that I grew up in. My experiences have shaped up the city of Mumbai, which is a character in itself in this book!
5) Who is your favourite Superhero? Why?
My favourite hero is 'Superman’ because of his genuine goodness of heart. For me, he is a real superhero because he was born as one. He doesn’t turn into one. And being from another planet, it is his selfless quality that prompts him to do good for the planet Earth. So as a superhero, he is the perfect role model. And of course, he flies “faster than a speeding bullet!”
In the movie, ‘Kill Bill,’ Quentin Tarantino rightly said (through one of the characters) that “Batman is actually Bruce Wayne, Spider-Man is actually Peter Parker. But Superman was born Superman. When Superman wakes up in the morning, he's Superman. His alter ego is Clark Kent.”
6) If Once Upon The Tracks Of Mumbai were to be made into a Bollywood movie, which Bollywood actors would you like to see play the role of Babloo, Vandana, Raghu and Sikandar?
If you have any actors in mind for other characters as well, please share!
That’s a tough one, Sarika! For Babloo, I feel that any one of the young stars in the market today would fit the bill! For Vandana, I could see Sonam Kapoor or Alia Bhatt. For Sikander, Ranveer Singh would be perfect.
7) What do you like to do when you are not reading or writing?
Give us a brief glimpse into the life of Rishi Vohra!
My day starts off with at the gym, after which I get to work in the wine space. This can involve reading up on wine, meetings, writing, or attending/organizing events. By late evening, I’m back and usually meet up with some friends in the area who are actors and filmmakers or chill out at home with the family. And side by side, I’m job hunting for a full-time position in the Sustainability sector.
8) Who are some of your favourite authors and what are some of your favourite books?
S. Hussain Zaidi is the only author whose books I have read more than once, so that would make him my favourite author. My favourite book is ‘Catcher in the Rye’ by JD Salinger.
9) What advice would you give to young, aspiring Indian writers?
Write when you have a story to tell. Otherwise you will find yourself struggling to put pen to paper (or in today’s world – fingers to keyboard). And of course, try to write at least one hour a day. Keep reading – it will help to improve your writing. And blog if you can – it will help you build an audience!
10) What's next in line for you? Any ideas for a new book?
My next book is ready and is set in Bollywood. It’s based on true events. It’s a fun ride, laced with humour and drama. Once again, this book is an alternative fiction.
Thank you so much, Rishi! It was lovely to have you over.
We appreciate you taking the time to answer our questions and we wish you lots of happiness and success in the future.
Thank you for inviting me to your blog, Sarika. It was a pleasure speaking with you! And keep up the great work on your blog! Will keep stopping by!
Enter below for you chance to win one of three copies of Once Upon The Tracks Of Mumbai.
*The giveaway is INDIA only (Sorry, INT readers!).
*Enter by filling out the Rafflecopter form and if it doesn't load, click here.
*After a winner is picked, they will have 48 hours to respond or else, we'll be compelled to pick another winner.
*The book will be shipped by the author.
Once again, I'd like to thank Rishi for everything and to you all, for stopping by.
Don't forget to tell me your favourite Superhero in the comments! I'd love to know your answers.