Authors have so much going on in their minds that hearing their views on their writing, books and the craft always pleases the readers. So, it’s been a while since I did an author interview and I am pleased to have as my guest, the elusive, mysterious and talented DD.
He is a man of many talents and being handsome to boot is just the tip of the iceberg! Having met him in Delhi a couple of years ago, I am honoured that DD decided to grace the blog. Articulate, accomplished, kind and supportive, his humility adds to his charms.
Please welcome, Mr D.R. Downer to Eloquent Articulation.
INDY: This is your 17th book, what is different about this one that sets it apart from the others? What inspired this historical fiction?
DD: As you’re already aware, ‘I am the 10th’ is a historical fiction, which is also a full-fledged novel. So far, I’ve predominantly written short stories in the contemporary thriller genre. But, with this book, I have stepped out of my comfort zone to write a full-length, well-researched, historical novel that includes exciting concepts like time travel, and ancient warfare.
INDY: How do think this book, ‘I Am The 10th’ has helped you grow as a writer?
DD: I majorly write suspense thrillers and/or crime fictions, which are more often than not, results of the writer’s imagination. It so happened that I was visiting a library in Singapore and happened to read about this one of the oldest and arguably the mightiest cults that originated in India way back in the 3rd century BC, and found it fascinating. It took me more than 5 years to do secondary and primary research on the topic, before I felt I have any authority to sit and write about it. So, the whole research, compilation, outlining, story-boarding; they all were relatively new for me, and I have learned a lot from therein.
INDY: Clichéd but still; what is your advice to struggling writers who find it difficult to strike a balance between their love for writing and the daily grind putting up obstacles to their success?
DD: Write daily; make a schedule and try to set aside a couple of hours daily to write. This especially helps when your schedule is chaotic. Start now, and before you know, you’d have a story already. And, as tempting as it is, do not edit as you write. Get the draft out first; after all, you cannot edit a blank paper, can you? Did I mention, Write Daily?
INDY: Can you give one line to describe your book, I Am the 10th?
DD: So, if it has to be described in one line, ‘I am the 10th’ is a mythological thriller based in the modern times, about one of the oldest cults that originated in India.
INDY: Of all the hats you wear; ghostwriter, editor and author which defines you the best?
DD: There is another hat that I wear; that of a writer. That, I think, defines me best. Right from cooking up stories in school to writing them for a living now, I am the happiest when I write.
INDY: Diverse genres, many professions and one person but how do you bring it all together?
DD: Read a lot and write a lot. That’s my eternal mantra I guess.
INDY: What inspires you to write and do you have a writing routine?
DD: I get up at 6 in the morning; mind you, not 6:01, not even 5:59- sharp at 6 am. Till about 9:30 am, I’m through with my breakfast, little exercise, some errands and a few chores around the house. 9:30 am, I log on to my social media accounts and spend exactly an hour going through the responses to my previous day’s posts and promotions, besides putting up a new post for promotion.
At 10:30, I close the social media, disconnect my laptop from the internet and start to work on my various WIPs (work in progress), dividing equal amount of time to a maximum three of them per day, for the next 3 hours. I come out of my study at 1:30 to fix up (read: nuke up) my lunch and spend the next half hour eating it while watching some TV program like Master Chef or something.
At 2:30 pm, I’m back at my desk with a cup of coffee, and spend the next two hours writing articles for a few websites I freelance for. At 4:30, I go to the gym in my society and run on the treadmill and do the cross-trainer for half-hour. During summers, I alternate between the gym and swimming in the pool in the society. At 5:30, I log back into social media and once again check the updates, the rating and sales figures of my books, and finalize the promotional plan for the next day.
My day ends at 7 pm, that’s when the Mrs. comes back from her office and the rest of the hours are spent in listening to how her day had been, and sometimes even telling her about mine (though she finds it utterly boring).
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INDY: Give us three “Good to Know” facts about you. Be creative.
I am a closet introvert. I prefer texts and emails over calls, any day.
I earn most of my living by writing for others (Ghostwriting).
I write drunk, and edit sober? 😀
INDY: As an author of seventeen books with different genres, which is your most favorite book/genre? Why?
DD: Quite honestly, as you rightly said, I have multiple books published in varied genres. I’ve done Family fiction, touched a bit of romance, crime fiction, psychological thriller, action, adventure, and lately, the historical fiction. I’d admit though, the latter, historical fiction has caught my fancy like nothing else could. I’m sure my history teacher from the high school would die of shock if she knew that I’m writing in this genre. It has affected me to the extent that I am now writing the next book in the same, Navruts series that is in fact, going to be a prequel to ‘I Am The 10th’ and is slated to come out in the early part of 2020.
Thank you for sharing your writing tips, books and for giving us a peek into the life of a busy writer/author. I wish you all the best for the next book in the series.
Based in modern times, ‘I Am The 10th’ is the story of one of the oldest, and arguably the mightiest cults that originated in India during the 3rd century BC. It’s a journey that will take you to the Mahabharata era, through 300 BC, and back. Witness the biggest and the deadliest battle ever in the history of mankind that could well spell the end of humanity and the end of this world. Experience the might of the ancient Shastras and Astras, like Naag Pash, Brahma Kavach, and Narayan Astra.
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