inKonversation with Zaarra Khader: Talks On Forbidden Boundaries & The Forbidden One
We get inKonversation with the lady who writes some very interesting stories that are thought provoking as well as sexy. Debuting with gorgeous stories, thought proving story lines and an eye catching cover is Zaarra Khader, author of The Forbidden One. Read on:
Congratulations on the stupendous debut Zaarra. That’s an unconventional idea. What triggered The Forbidden One?
Thank you… I don’t think it is an unconventional idea, I think it is unconventional to acknowledge the forbidden things one would have done in their life or to address the forbidden aspects of the society we live in.
One fact that left you baffled during the research of the book.
The time when I was researching on the Cloud burst in Rishikesh and misery of the survivors in the relief camp was something that left me disheartened, it was painful to accept that one calamity can wash away all of the humanity and piousness we claim as a society.
The cover is an enticing one but at the same time kind of misleading too. What’s the Cover Story?
I don’t think it is misleading at all! If you read the story Sinful aspirations you will realize that the cover is very much in sync with the theme of the book. A woman in chains – doesn’t that give you all the possible forbidden thoughts?
Even before we sent the book for publishing, me and my photographer friend Rochelle Vaz knew we would we working around this theme and had already finalized a sketch and setting for our dream cover someday. It so happened that we didn’t approve of the other cover’s recommended by the design team and we decided to go in for a proper shoot for the cover.
What is Zaarra – the writer that Zaarra – the person isn’t?
Zaarra – the writer – is the untamed and irrepressible part of Zaarra the person, I love living in the free flowing imaginative space which is so far away from the mundane lives we lead otherwise!
Getting a publisher’s nod is generally quite an adventure for most of the debuting writers. How did your adventure (or misadventure) in the run-up to be on a book cover go?
I must say it was quiet an adventure because as a first time author you don’t even know how many publishers actually exist in this country, then to send in manuscripts on mails without even knowing is they will ever be read, I think it’s quiet a struggle for each one who dreams to be an author. I can say this from my experience that eventually if the manuscript is good and you can knock enough doors, you will find the one that opens itself to show you the path to your dreams.
How much of the stories in The Forbidden One are real life influenced?
Almost all of them… each story in The Forbidden One is as real as reality can be.
We are seeing a sudden surge in the Indian writing scene of late especially comprising of people in their day, full time jobs.
What do you think drives anybody after a 12-hour slogging shift to sit and write a story?
Their passion to reach out to the world and tell the story that they so believe in. It’s never easy to be in a full time job, drain your body and mind and then gather yourself to weave a story that can entice your readers!
A first published piece credited to one’s name is always such exhilaration. Which one was yours?
I was way back when I was in class 9th when my poetry was selected by poetry.com for their next poetry collection book and I was sent a letter of appreciation.
Writing has often been described as a journey directed inside. Has that journey been enlightening or devastating so far?
Enlightenment indeed, the more you delve into the lives of your characters or the subject you are writing about, the more you learn about the world,about life, people and even about your own self.
Most of us who take up writing have gone through a childhood of imagined friends and worlds. Tell us about your most prominent imagination from your childhood.
Coming from a South Indian family, the weddings towards outside of the world are too popular only for the gold given to the girl as dowry or the number of dishes they had in the menu, as a child brought up in Delhi, I used to love the vibrant and fun filled Punjabi weddings and I think that was my favorite imagination too.
What according to you will be a milestone writing feat?
For me a milestone writing assignment would be to write a film on the Devdasi’s and the Rajah’s from interiors of Andhra Pradesh, I am already working on it, I hope someday I can showcase it to the world in the cinema screens.
If writing was archery, you Eklavya; whom would you consider to be your Drona?
My mentor is also a dear family friend Goldy,He would have read over 5000 books in his life and the way he remembers the best moments and quotes from every book used to impress me like how.I haven’t learnt how to write from him but what he taught me was to dig out the stories that resided deep in me and express it in a way that strikes and emotional chord with the readers!
What does The Forbidden One give to the reader that they have not been offered by the books in the same genre, before?
To begin with short stories segment is not too popular in our country and this is despite the fact that most of the potential readers are people who can’t ever motivate themselves to read through a full novel, The Forbidden One hence is an easy read which is written to stir you up and shake you from within without you realizing it.
What has been your biggest writing block?
The self-critic in me is the only gigantic block that I came across in my journey as a writer. I think the worst thing you can do to yourself is to not let your creativity flow by being your own judge and trashing your own work because your rating of good writing comes from the works of the renowned writers that you read during your growing up years…What you don’t know is that they were as good or as bad as any new author would have been, its only with time and experience that you learn to excel in any creative field.
Complete fiction vs inspired characterizations; which do you indulge in more? And why?
I am a dreamer and a drifter in real life but I must also confess that inspired characterization is more of my space when it comes to writing because somewhere your experiences or the people that you end up meeting in life do play on your mind when you create the story in your mind.
What is next on the literary front from you?
I have just finished writing a short story on Devdasi’s from the eastern coast of India and have also started writing my next book It waz Consensual (novel)
Your words of wisdom for newbie writers.
When it comes to writing no one else’s wisdom matters except yours, if you believe in yourself and your story, things will automatically fall in place.