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Location: Dublin, Republic of, Ireland

Thursday, 18 January 2007

I once spoke to the bestselling novelist Amulya Malladi who lives in Denmark & this is what she said. Replaying a fraction here:

"Sometimes, I feel like I've climbed Mount Everest in my shorts. On other days, I do feel like a total loser unable to get any meaningful writing done and there are still days when I wonder why I torture myself as a writer.

"But all in all, the pain, the suffering and the depression that comes with it...all of it is worth seeing my book in bookstores and having readers send me email, telling me how much they enjoy my work.

"Since English books are difficult to find in Denmark, I buy them online. I have found just one bookstore though that has an extensive selection. It's right in the centre of Denmark, only when I think about it, I haven't been there often enough for the name to register.

"I am used to American bookshops in the US, where I lived and worked for many years, with Starbucks right in the heart of its shelves and with couches where I would have had the chance to browse through books and magazines before deciding on a purchase. I take a long time with that so here the bookstores feel alien. Still, there is a cafe cum bookshop in Copenhagen called Paludin and I like being there for the moment.

"I'm presently reading the History of Love by Nicole Kraus. I own a mid-sized library at home and make the time to read, usually after my two little sons have been tucked up in bed. I've noticed a commendable amount of fiction from Iran, Afghanistan and Thailand besides, India and China, getting a fair amount of attention.

"Good books get attention no matter where they come from. As the world gets smaller, we need to learn each other's cultures and fiction is a great medium for that.

"I am just about getting ready to wrap up my fifth book. This makes the going slow and frustrating especially because I want to start working on my sixth book. I have an idea and want to run with it. I find my computer a necessity like a microwave oven.

"Mostly I write in 2-3 hours spurts throughout the day and take breaks whenever necessary. I like to write late into the night, especially to go to bed at 4am or so. I am so clearly a night person. And I usually don't breakfast. I juggle my time and write after the kids go to bed at 8pm.

"I do have other varied interests that don't mesh with my writing day and they don't need to. It's all about juggling time with regards to publicity interviews, telephone conversations, friends, shopping and a job.

"I write my stories in my office. I don't set any kind of target. I have no idea how I start writing every day...it just begins when it does. The very same inner push that compels me to write is what also compels me to be an industrious prolific author. I don't have any superstitious vices or rituals like that...no.

"As an author, I think I have a lot to learn and better books to write with regards to a future vision. I have already come a long way from my first book which is A Breath of Fresh Air to the book I'm working now which is tentatively titled, Sound of Language. I have grown as a person. I was 25 when I wrote my first book. I'm 31 now and I have 2 kids.

"I have a warm relationship with both my literary agent and my editor. My agent is absolutely wonderful; very supportive and always available. My editor is the same and I have an immense amount of respect for them both. and value their opinions. My editor is from Random Publishers, USA. We've also become friends. This after having worked together for many years now, especially my editor and me.

"I do see my future filled with books that get better and better and I as an individual and writer merging together with my books." - Amulaya Malladi


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