While we greatly enjoy reading a piece of literature, our appreciation of it increases, if we get an opportunity to know about its author closer.
Today, I feel privileged to post an interview with Dr Nikhil Jain, author of the Amazon best-selling book, The Journey to Growing up & Other Short Stories, published on October 17, 2015. This book is a collection of short stories based on real life incidents which Dr Nikhil got an opportunity to see and work upon in an objective way being a psychiatrist himself.
Dr Nikhil Jain is a psychiatrist by profession and loves literature. He was born and brought up in Gangtok ; and for his training, he travelled to Bikaner, Jaipur, Bangalore and Florida. Besides Literature, he has interests in mathematics and cooking as well. Presently, he lives with his wife Priyanka and son Yashaswi at Rohtak.
In this interview, Dr Nikhil reveals his inspirations, literary interests, his messages for the blog readers and aspiring writers in general.
And without creating much suspense and delay now, I would like to share with you an exclusive interview with Dr Nikhil Jain, the story behind making of him as an author.
Q: Sir, tell us something about this book?
Dr Nikhil: This book, as mentioned, is a collection of 10 short stories based on real life incidents. The stories written touch the conflicts of the common man and their everyday dilemmas and challenges.
Q. When did you start writing these stories? Did you know at that time that you would publish them in the form of a book?
Dr Nikhil: I started writing these stories about two years ago. It began as a revival of my hobby that had taken a beating during the residency (period when I did my MD) days. The idea was to write for the sake of writing, I showed them to a few near and dear ones and slowly I got coaxed into publishing them …
Q. What inspired you to write these stories?
Dr Nikhil: I have always been interested in literature. In college, I was the Literary Secretary for three consecutive years. Later I specialized in psychiatry and as a psychiatrist I frequently have a chance to examine strife in an objective way. This strife often comes packaged in unexpected experiences. Later in life, with some imaginative enhancement, these unexpected experiences transform into anecdotes which are related to friends as a means of celebrating new beginnings. I wanted a larger audience to celebrate with and thus this anthology…
Q. How much time did writing these stories take?
Dr Nikhil: It took a total of two years, but I wrote in stops and starts, so an accurate estimate is difficult to make.
Q. How do you relate with the characters of the stories?
Dr Nikhil: All but one of the stories in my book are based on true life events. Some of them happened to me, others to people I know. In that sense it was easy to relate to them, but on the other hand this made the characterization difficult also, because the protagonists of the stories are common human beings and there is no sensationalism to craft.
Q. Which is your favourite story in the book and why?
Dr Nikhil: Well. I like all of them, but I found it very soothing to write “Carefree”. In terms of flow of the narration, I enjoyed the title story, “The Journey to Growing Up”. I wrote it in one sitting.
Q. How does it feel to see the book in the hands of the reader? Do you have any particular story to share?
Dr Nikhil: It feels amazing…:)
Yes, I do have the most rewarding incident associated with the book to share. It was when my cousin’s classmate reportedly hid my book in her textbook and read it while the teacher was teaching in the class. This beats being listed on the Amazon’s bestseller list (where I was for a while)…
Q. How does being a doctor differ from being a writer? To which do you relate more closely?
Dr Nikhil: I feel doctor is in a very advantageous position if he chooses to write… He gets to view the tragedies and comedies of everyday life from very close quarters.
The two are very different professions though. As a writer you can express anguish and despair, but as a doctor you are bound to express only hope…
Q. What are your future plans? Are you planning a sequel?
Dr Nikhil: I am thinking about writing fiction this time… but I am only thinking 🙂
Q. What are the key lessons you learnt while writing and then publishing this book?
Dr Nikhil: Do not stop dreaming!!!
Q. Sir, it would be unfair on my part, if I do not ask you these questions, which are your favorite books and who are your favorite authors?
Dr Nikhil: I have always enjoyed short stories more than novels. My favourite short stories are “The Necklace” by Guy de Maupassant,“The last leaf” & “The Cop and the Anthem” by O Henry and many –many Chekhov’s short stories.
Ken Follet, Jeffrey Archer and A C Doyle’s novels have also transported me to different worlds.
Q. Any book(s) which you would want to recommend from your personal reading list to our readers ?
Dr Nikhil: If I have to name one author, I will recommend Anton Chekov…I feel reading his works is like eating dark chocolate: a rich, profound, stimulating experience, but takes time getting used to.
Q. Since we are bidding adieu to this year, what message would you want to convey to our readers and aspiring writers?
Dr Nikhil: To readers: This is my first book and I might not be perfect, but I will be true and these stories will touch you.
And to aspiring writers, I will repeat what I learnt from this process, Do not stop dreaming!!!
So, my dear readers, I am very sure that you all would have greatly enjoyed the journey of the writer, from a doctor to becoming an author. And if you want to know more about Dr Nikhil Jain and his book, Journey to Growing up, then like his facebook page by clicking here. You can also place an order for his book by visiting here and if you wish to write to him after reading his book, you can write to him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wishing you all happy reading hours and may you all have an amazing journey to growing up!