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‘Writing becomes difficult if your books sell’

“I would really like to see an Indian version of Harry Potter with Indianised witches, and Tantriks, and mythical creatures and what not!” He is young, is a writer and has a huge fan base. Here is a quick five candid conversation with popular writer Durjoy Datta!

1. Is being a young and good-looking writer difficult?
Yes, it is difficult! I know Rana Dasgupta is great writer but I don’t think he has to answer this question. Moreover by and large, I don’t think people find me good looking and hence buy my books. It’s almost insulting to the reader to assume that. They don’t need to buy my books to look at me, they just need to visit my Facebook profile, and when it comes to that they a billion better options.

2. Has the writing and reading preferences of people changed?
As a writer I don’t think writing is ever easy. It keeps getting difficult with every subsequent book, and God forbid, a book that sells. The reading preferences haven’t changed, the authors playing to those preferences are now getting visibility. Indian commercial fiction writers aren’t replacing literary writers, they are complementing them. If anything has changed, it’s the fact that more Indian commercial fiction writers are being read than western commercial fiction writers. If you go to any book shop, Indian commercial writer hardly take up any shelf space.

3. Would you like to be considered a classic or a romantic writer?
I am not even thirty right now and I’m still struggling to find a voice that’s wholly my own. Also, I got published way earlier than I should have and hence the struggle is even more difficult. So till the time I find a voice, I would rather be just called a writer than anything else.

4. How important it is to market a book and why?
I’m told it’s extremely important and slowly I have started to believe it. For the first seven books out of eleven I didn’t do a single book launch or actively pursued being covered; my books sold because of word of mouth. But now, to generate that word of mouth is extremely difficult because the things vying for people’s attention is way to many and it becomes extremely important for an author to break through that clutter and at least give the reader the information that hey, the book is out, please buy it.

5. Any book that you would to re-write it in your style?
I wouldn’t like to re-writer any book that I really liked because then I would hate the book. Though I would really like to see an Indian version of Harry Potter with Indianised witches, and Tantriks, and mythical creatures and what not! That would be exciting.

source: timesofindia.indiatimes