Dhaval Dange completed his Bachelors & Masters in Computer Science from Pune. He is currently working as a software developer and work as Technology Lead at Infosys, Pune. He is an Author of “The Other Way Round” also a guest columnist at an online magazine. Let us know more about Dhaval and his writing.
What inspired you to start writing?
Writing has always been a part of my life. Maybe because I loved to read since a very early age. I always think what inspired me to write.. maybe it’s my reading that struck the chord with my imagination and creative mind. My family always played a huge role in adding in to this. I was always encouraged to read and given the books and stories that kept me interested in this hobby. I think the authors I read also played as catalyst in being an inspiration for my hobby. I always enjoyed reading good books, articles, short stories and stuff and wondered if I could give the same joy to other people with similar hobby. I tried my hand at writing and my humble beginnings where writing in my school magazines and short stories, poems etc. I always got good response on whatever I worked on in terms of writing and that motivated me to explore more.
What did you like to read when you were a boy?
I read almost anything and everything in my childhood. As far as I can remember I began with reading short stories in Readers’ Digest few Indian authors and Enid Blyton. I then moved on to some non-fiction and history stuff as I grew. I developed keen interest in reading almost anything and everything good I could lay my hands on.
What is the greatest challenge in writing a book?
Greatest challenge is bringing out the right words and sentences to get your thoughts on to the paper. At times the problem lies in how you would like to put forth a thought. No amount of vocabulary or sentences sometimes seem to do justice to your thought process. Some other times the problem is exactly the reverse; you have multiple wonderful ways to say something on paper and you do not know which one you should zero down to. But overall it’s fun, as far as creative work is considered, challenge is fun.
How much research do you do before writing the book?
Depends on what I am writing actually. The subject I am dealing with decides what kind of research may or may not be needed for my written work. For fiction writing even though most things are imaginative and free flow of thought brought down to paper, it still needs to be factually correct and referenced. At such times I do go through some stuff I may not be acquainted with.
For the other way round, I guess at least 30% of the book could not have been possible without research and reading. Though it is a pure fiction driven story, but when you’ll actually read it, you’ll maybe fathom the need for reading I had to go through for certain sequences. It has like a pinch of salt a holy mix of biology, mythology and some research on certain policies and procedures of institutions.
What motivated you to write the book “The Other Way Round”?
I was always motivated into writing. I really can’t zero down on a single thing that motivated me to write “The Other Way Round“. I had this idea for quite some years in my head and never really aimed at publishing it. I just went on and on to complete it and then just when I was about to wrap it up, I seriously thought of approaching some publishers to check if this is worth going out to the audiences than just having it written for my personal collection (unlike most of my written stuff is). To my surprise after a few rejections my book was really taken well and applauded by the Srishti Publishers & Distributers, Delhi. I also got a few unexpectedly good reviews and ‘fan mails’ if you can call them so. Regarding my next one I can surely say that the readers’ response is the biggest motivation of all.
Can you tell us more about your latest book “The Other Way Round”?
I really don’t know if this can be called as ‘latest’ as it was published in September 2012. I’m already working on something interesting for my readers which my see the light of the day by early 2016 if everything goes as per the plan.
Speaking of “The Other Way Round“, this I could term as a ‘mind bender’. A thriller that is not an out-and-out thriller as far as I can sum it up, but the story and plot would certainly keep you hooked revealing various aspects of the characters involved. This is a story of a guy, Vishal, who is out there to pursue his ambition of becoming a documentary film maker and as a part of which is exploring a 14-day spiritual and personality development workshop as a subject. The story takes various twists and turns which baffles the protagonists and the readers leading to unimaginable possibilities, discoveries and theories. The fun ride comes to an end in a format as bizarre as anything making the readers what I call as ‘bend their minds’ beyond the pages of the book.
Who are your favourite authors?
Favourite authors I would say would range from Dan Brown, Khushwant Singh, Paulo Coelho. I also love reading articles and non-fiction by M.J. Akbar, Ramchandra Guha, Shekhar Gupta etc. Currently I have spent more time into non-fiction reading and current event based articles. There’s also some magnificent fiction writings that have been done in Marathi literature by some really great writers and thinkers. On the likes of P.L. Deshpande & V. P. Kale these are just pioneers of fiction writings that will blow one’s mind and I’ve attempted to read few of their works too, but sadly haven’t even explored like more than a tip of the iceberg on those grounds.
How much time do you dedicate for writing on a daily basis?
This is kind of hard to calculate even approximately. I’m extremely moody when it comes to my creative space. I could write for hours together at times, while there are also instances where in I won’t write for weeks to go. Most times, very interesting and intriguing ideas strike the mind when I have nothing to note them down on, the other times I face what they call as ‘writers block’. Surpassing all of these and depending on if I’m ‘in-the-zone’ I blurt out my thoughts and ideas on paper. So to sum up, I have no agenda when it comes to setting ‘time-table’ on writing. I let it happen when it comes and as it comes, I like it free and flowing without any plan, without any boundaries of time and structure.
What words of wisdom would you like to give to aspiring writers?
It seems too early in my stage of writing experience to give out any words of wisdom to aspiring writers. I myself at times feel in need of words of wisdom from various sources. But if I’ve learnt anything from whatever I have written in my stories, articles and other writings is that more than thinking what appeals or sells, write what you wish to write and what you as a reader would wish to read. Writing for me is a very personal affair that finds connect with the outside world.
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