When I read ‘My father is a Hero’ I was awed by the author’s ability to capture elements in his novel that usually go unnoticed.The contribution and sacrifices that go in nurturing a child by a single father has been beautifully written. And what better way to know more about the author than to hound him for an interview? (I AM KIDDING, OKAY). The author was extremely kind and generous to offer his time to do an interview for The Literary Cat.
You can read the review of My Father is Hero here: Review: My Father is a Hero
Get to know the Author:
Nishant Kaushik is the author of six published novels. He also keeps a day job as a business, IT, and something-of-everything consultant in Melbourne. Along his journey as a novelist he has interned as a screenplay consultant, a comic book co-writer, a columnist for journals like Yowoto and Mildred – essentially, he loves experimenting with genres ranging from full-length novels to guest articles. He lives in Australia with his wife and son.
- Hello, Sir. Thank you for taking out time to do an interview. When did you first realise you wanted to become a writer?
NK: There was no single trigger. My interest in writing evolved over years, from spot-storytelling and essay writing competitions in school, to articles for the college magazine, followed by a couple of poems for newspaper supplements. As far as I can remember, the idea of my first novel finally occurred to me when I was 19. It was finally published when I was nearly 24.
- What inspired you to write your latest novel, “My Father is a Hero”?
NK: My inspiration lies in my own and many other wonderful fathers I have met in my life. Unlike a mother’s love that is much talked about, a father’s love is rather understated. One often has to peel through their tough, terse exteriors to understand their love. Even today when I talk to my father, we exchange few words. But he has always shown through his actions that he has a heart of gold. This golden heart is the basis on which I fashioned my central character.
- Tell us a little about your book.
NK: My Father Is A Hero is a fictional account of a single father’s determined journey towards seeing his daughter emerge as a successful, confident girl with the passion to pursue her passion. It also speaks of the struggles of a middle-class family and how love trumps all troughs that are associated with a mediocre career, self-conflicts during adolescence, and the regret of an unfulfilled dream.
- What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
NK: I have specific requirements on the ambience around me. I cannot write at home, I must find a café that stays open until late in the night. It must be crowded enough for me to observe people, but not too crowded to find a seat. And the table must NOT be rickety!
- Where did your love for books/storytelling/writing come from?
NK: I will attribute that to the several books written by Enid Blyton, Charles Dickens, and Mark Twain I read when I was a young boy. I wish I had sustained this habit of reading.
- What does your family think of your writing?
NK: They are very honest about what they feel, and I guess that is how it should be. They praise my work where it is due, but also warn me against mediocrity. I recently canned a manuscript I had been working on, because my mother read a draft and felt it was going nowhere. I always rely on them for feedback.
- Are there any new authors who have grasped your interest?
NK: As I said I haven’t maintained the reading habit much. But Khaled Hosseini and Aravind Adiga are among a few authors whose recent books I have enjoyed reading.
- How is Nishant Kaushik like when he’s not writing?
NK: A regular office goer who struggles to make time between daily chores, family duties, and sleep that I am always in dire need of.
- If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything about any of your novels?
NK: I would un-heed all advice I got during my early years as an author that told me I needed erotica and cuss words to make my work commercially viable.
- A piece of advice you’d like to give to budding authors.
NK: The best advice I can give to anyone who wants to write is to not seek advice. Writing is an experience unique to every writer, and we all discover in our own ways what makes our work work. This journey is sacrosanct and we should not tamper with it too much by looking for templated tips on dos and dont’s.
I hope you had as great a time reading the blog post as I had writing and interviewing. Stay tuned for more interesting interviews!