Friday, February 13, 2015

Faraaz Kazi, the Writer Who Put Indian Romance Fiction on World Map, Talks about His New Book, Love and More

With Truly, Madly, Deeply, esteemed writer Faaraz Kazi, made a stunning début and how! Kazi went on to win the 2013 National Début Youth Fiction Award and received the YCOF National Excellence award in Creative Writing. He is also first Indian author to have won coveted ‘Best Début (Romance)’ title at the international Goodreads choice awards.

His book Truly, Madly, Deeply, won him the tag of being called the 'Nicholas Sparks of India.' So far, it is the only Indian book to have been nominated in 7 categories at the Goodreads choice awards. It is also the only Indian book to feature in the 'Top 100 YA Global Fiction' list.

Kazi is a fellow member of the prominent 'Film Writers Association of India.' He is a three-time post graduate and also a certified soft-skills trainer. In addition, Kazi is the founder and CEO of DigiImprint Solutions, India's first exclusive promotional agency for authors and artists. He is a well-known personality in literary fraternity and on social media.

Kazi, one of the top rated mainstream male romance writers in India, is a voracious reader and loves to sing. He is a young marketer who owns a radically innovative blog, and writes for major media houses.

Faraaz Kazi's new book, Love: Lots of Volatile Emotions, which tries to demystify love as an emotion, is due for release on Valentine's Day, 2015. Infibeam had the honour of talking to the eminent author and learn about the new book:

Que: Your first two books, Truly Madly Deeply... Memoirs of a Broken Heart's First Love! and The Other Side have tasted immense success. What inspired you to take up writing?

Faaraz Kazi: I guess I was born with the thirst to search for my life's mojo through the art of writing. I first took up the pen when I was seven but before that, I started reading. I started small with fairy tales and comics by the age of five and by ten, I was reading classics. So many words, so many writers influenced my young mind. After relating to various stories at so many different levels of consciousness, writing became a hobby. Inspiration thus, wasn't far away.

Que: Your third book Love: Lots of Volatile Emotions is about to release on Valentine's Day. Tell us what the book is about.

Faaraz Kazi: LOVE is a one-of-a-kind project. It is a cross genre anthology that ties all the stories together by that single emotion of LOVE which multifaceted in nature. The perception of this emotion is what is volatile through the lenses of the fourteen writers in this anthology who have contributed a story each. It gives a key perspective on how people view love these days without tying the emotion specifically to one genre, i.e. romance.

Que: What inspired you to write this book?

Faaraz Kazi: I wrote 'The Doorway' (my story in the LOVE anthology) two years back for the international magazine, L'Officiel. The one featured here is an improvised version of the same story. Around that time, I was working on too many short-stories and the idea was to bring out a romance collection of short-stories all by myself but when I started finalising the project, I realized that there were too many short-story collections and even anthologies in the market dealing with the same kind of subject.

I wondered what could I do to make it unique as my previous two books? The idea to take the perspective of thirteen other writers across genres came to me one fine day after a lot of thought and I realized this hadn't been done before. And LOVE was born.

Que: Whom do you intend to reach out with this book?

Faaraz Kazi: Anyone and everyone who believes in LOVE and is not married to the idea of love as a limited and weak emotion.

Que: How did you research for the contents of the book? 

Faaraz Kazi: My primary research lies in the power of pure observation as I believe, a good writer should be a great observer. I follow three steps- Learn, Adapt and Write.

Que: Since your books are mostly about love, are they inspired from your own life, or someone close to you?

Faaraz Kazi: My books are inspired from real-life. Circumstances I observe, people I meet and things I discover in my travel. But I cannot say that they are true because at the end of the day I write fiction and truth is what you seek from fiction.

Que: You must be a bookworm yourself. Tell us about your favourite writers and what you like about them.

Faaraz Kazi: I love Khalid Hosseini for portaying the life of Afghan people through his beautiful words and making us more human than we realise. I love JK Rowling for her imagination and the sheer power to create new worlds out of vacuum. I love Nicholas Sparks for making us believe in love through his simplistic way of writing.

Que: As a write, what do you prefer more: typing or the pen?

Faaraz Kazi: The pen. My first drafts are all written by hand. I edit when I type them out.

Que: With praise comes criticism as well. How do you deal with it?

Faaraz Kazi: I learn from the useful ones. I ignore the rubbish.

Que: You have been called 'the Nicholas Sparks of India.' How does it feel?

Faaraz Kazi: I take it with a pinch of salt but if people feel so then nothing is as great a honour because he is one writer I've grown up reading and I admire him a lot.

Que: What would you tell those who aren’t passionate readers or those who are reluctant to pick up a book and begin reading?

Faaraz Kazi: Give reading a chance. There are entire worlds waiting for you there, new discoveries to be made and new bonds to be formed. Read a good book and watch your life transform before your very eyes.