Saurabh Garh is from Delhi but lives in Mumbai. He is a computer science graduate and a MBA from MDI Gurgaon. By the day he runs an events company and work on marketing and strategy jobs that come his way. He is currently working as a part owner of an events management business.
What inspired you to start writing?
In my case, the inspiration did not come from a “what” but from “who.” Multiple whos. Friends primarily. I would like to talk about three of these whos.
A, a pen pal in US who loved writing long emails to me. I had to start writing well to be able to keep upto her standards.
B, a friend who told me about blogging and made me start writing small posts about inane things in my life.
And C, a friend who invited me to write a book about on our time at MDI. The book hasn’t materialized yet. May be when we are old and have nothing else to do?
Apart from these three, I am sure tons of people, things, stars and opportunities would have come together to make me a writer. And even though I want to, no, I cant thank all of them here. I do keep thanking them otherwise though.
What did you like to read when you were a boy?
At the risk of getting ridiculed, I would say, I loved reading Super Commando Dhruv when I was growing up. And apart from Dhruv, I loved everything that came from Raj Comics. In fact someday, I want to be able to write comics.
In terms of serious things like fiction and non-fiction, I started reading when I was at MDI.
And yeah, I wish I had started reading sooner!
What is the greatest challenge in writing a book?
Once you have a story idea, for most people, a book typically takes at least 6 months of dedicated writing (anything more than 60K words I mean). Some write fast, some are slow but it’s in the 6-month ballpark.
Since I am a very fickle-minded person and I keep hopping from one thing to another, one project to another, the greatest challenge for me was to continue to keep writing for these six very long months.
How much research do you do before writing the book?
So much that I tend to become an “expert” on the subject. For #tnks, I read so much about Bollywood that I could actually write, produce, direct and act in the movie. Of course I did not get any first hand inputs from any celebrities – everything was done over the web and from grapevine.
Apart from that, for every weapon I used, every scenario I described, every object in the book, I’ve made copious notes. I just can not function without my notes. I have to have everything with me before I start any writing. I guess my training as a “manager” has made me think in such a structured fashion.
Though I am not sure if it’s a good thing or a bad thing!
What motivated you to write the book “The Nidhi Kapoor Story”?
I don’t know. It just happened. Aren’t all great things in life such happy accidents?
Can you tell us more about your latest book “The Nidhi Kapoor Story”?
Nidhi Kapoor is a very famous Bollywood actress. She is about to start work on the grandest project of her life when she discovers that her pets have been killed brutally in her very home. ACP Prakash Mohile is asked to investigate the case and while investigating, he uncovers that the Kapoor household has a few skeletons buried in their garden! And this is when things start going out of hands. As we go along in the story, there is deceit, anger, hatred, greed and eventually murder. The question is, who wants to hurt Nidhi? And why? And can Prakash Mohile save her?
To be honest, the characters and the story is an attempt to explore 5 universal afflictions (or biblical sins or vices or whatever you may call them).
How did you came up with the idea of writing crime thriller fiction genre book?
I don’t know.
I guess I read too much Lee Child and James Patterson and John Grisham and Jeffery Archer in my free time?
Who are your favorite authors?
I love Charles Bukwoski. I wish I could write like him. I have read almost all his work.
Then I am very fond of Lee Child and John Grisham. I also like Harper Lee (though I haven’t read Go Set a Watchman). I want to claim that I love Murakami but I don’t understand a large part of what he writes.
And no, I am not as well read as an author ought to be! That’s the second regret I have (first one is that I started reading too late).
How much time do you dedicate for writing on a daily basis?
When I am in the middle of the writing sprees, I write about 3 hours everyday. When I am not writing, I don’t write at all, except may be my blog.
And this approach, by the way, sucks. You have to write everyday. There was a time when I wrote everyday. But lately work has been keeping me busy. So I cant. Regret # 3.
What words of wisdom would you like to give to aspiring writers?
I have a two-word answer. Write everyday.
Everything else is hogwash. Everything else is immaterial. Everything else is unnecessary. Not required. Not important. If you can write everyday, even if for ten minutes, you have taken a step towards being a better writer. And that’s all that a writer ought to do.
And a bonus advice? Read about Jeff Bezos’ advice on Regret Minimization. Thank me later ;P
You can buy his book now: