What it takes to write a book.

Sometime back I had put this as a status update on my Facebook page

It takes two years and months and months of research and hours of writing, re writing and writing and editing to produce a book. And then there are people who read it and TRASH it in a few seconds without even having written one measly article for a newspaper, let alone a book themselves! And they hide under the disguise of 'constructive criticism'. No wonder Christopher Hampton said "Asking a working writer what he feels about critics is like asking a lamp-post what it feels about dogs" :D
This status update of mine got a record number of impressions (3000 +) and likes. 
Often when I meet people, they tell me "I always wanted to write a book." For any one of you who is reading this and who wants to write a book,  this video is a must watch. It tells you exactly like it is.
A writer's job is a very intense job. It is truly not easy to sit alone in a room, just with your computer and your thoughts and keep writing and writing and writing and writing, day in and day out until you have written about 70,000 to 80,000 words that coherently follow a plot and on top of that is interesting, sounds real and it is  written well enough for people to want to read it.

So you can imagine the immense amount of satisfaction I felt last night, as I completed writing my third book. Yes I did! It will still take six months for the book to hit the market. (Yeah, there is that MUCH work involved after writing it!)

Most writers who share their experience on writing say that to be a writer one has to be an introvert as well as an extrovert. You have to be interested enough in people and you have to be really observant. At the same time, you have to be detached enough to translate what you observe into writing. For me, the only way I can do it is by blocking out everything that is not of immediate urgency. When I write, it has to be just me and my characters. I have to step into another world. I have to travel with my protagonist. I have to make that journey to that awful place inside my own head and pull out everything, examine it, analyse it and then pour it into words and temper them with the right amount of emotions.

And at times, it gets very lonely.

Two days back I texted one of my closest friends. I told her that by the time I finish writing my book I think I will not have any friends left.(as I do tend to shut off from everyone when I am concentrating on my book and some people get pissed off big time because I am unavailable and I don't return their calls) She corrected me. She said that by the time I finish I will know who my real friends are. How rightly she said it!

I do think I am really lucky to have as my best friend one of the most understanding guys. He is really really  proud of what I do. He is extremely supportive and he is the first to read anything I write and get back to me with feedback and he tells me what works and what probably does not. Yeah and a good thing is also that I am married to him :)  He deserves a BIG kiss :)

Thank you Satish!

Another person who reads my work as and when I complete the chapters and who offers feedback (and I fought with him  for that and bullied him too and yet he was so patient :p ) and suggestions is  one of my very good friends (whom I have mentioned on my blog earlier) Mayank Mittal.

Thanks a lot  Mayank!

One other person who reads  my work  (and does not fight with me,he is too sweet for that!) and is always the perfect gentleman is

Ramesh really writes well himself and has a superb business blog going.(check out his writing by clicking on his name)

Thanks a lot Ramesh!

There is one more person who played a big role to push me to work really hard this time. I would have never worked so hard and pushed myself this much, but for Durjoy Datta, who is now a good friend too.

Durjoy is a best selling author of FIVE titles and chances are you have already read him.

I have read all his five books and I do really enjoy them, but be warned, if you are slightly on the conservative side you  may not like his totally explicit style and it may shock you :P 

Durjoy is honest, down to earth and very very hardworking and enterprising too. He has now started his own publishing house (Grapevine India) along with a partner, and his sixth title will be out soon.
You can check out his books (and order them)  here.

 Thanks a lot Durjoy!! :)

At the risk of this post sounding too much like an Oscar speech, there is another person whom I just have to mention, who is one of my closest friends who lives in the UK and with whom I exchange emails on a daily basis. And sometimes even when I don't write back for a week (which is like a huge gap if we go by our standards) she is most understanding. Thanks Sis!
 Then of course, THE most important person for a writer--YOU, the reader. I get mails, comments, FB messages--all of which I truly value. (I write back too!) So if you have been reading me, a BIG  and a heartfelt THANKS to YOU!

So now you know what it really takes to write a book. :-)It is motivation, dedication, hard work, perseverance.

But mostly it is just sitting at the computer (even when you would rather be chatting on the phone with a friend or checking out a movie at the multiplex or relaxing at a pub with a drink) and typing and typing and typing and thinking and thinking and typing and typing some more!
You can interact with me on my Facebook page.  I reply to almost all comments and I check it very regularly. I do read all the comments left here too  and manage to reply most of the time even if slightly late :)


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  2. Thanks a lot Srikar. I am looking forward to it too :P :)

  3. Loved your "Life Is What You Make It". It is one the best books released this year. Looking forward to your next release..all the best :) :)

  4. "But mostly it is just sitting at the computer (even when you would rather be chatting on the phone with a friend or checking out a movie at the multiplex or relaxing at a pub with a drink) and typing and typing and typing and thinking and thinking and typing and typing some more!" - This is very true... There is always a more relaxing thing to do :D... I guess it applies to every job, even to some one like an IT professional or a sportsman... Hard work and ONLY hard work pays!!!

  5. thank u for putting yourself through all that hard work because you really gave us some incredible stuff to read..Wishing you all the best for your next book :) :).. God bless you :) :)

  6. Suku:Thanks a lot lot lot :)

    Cocktail Party: i guess talent and luck are ALSO important apart from hard work :P :)

  7. Hi,
    As some one who is working on his first, I can only imagine what all you must have gone through to write three. I am not that patient a person, sometime I write loads, then read it to findthat it doesn't intersect well, or is maybe crappy and throw it away. Frustrating.

    I've read both your books, and from the second one I hope that the third one is larger. This way we get to read more.

  8. Congrats Preeti on completing the 3rd one! Looking forward to reading it! :-)

  9. Anonymous6:40 PM

    Hey nice post about the way you have pushed yourself for writing a book. Yeah I too feel it's really require for a writer to be introvert for a time being s/he is writing a book.

    And yeah as I have mentioned before also. I am desperately looking forward for your book.

  10. Congratulation Preeti on finishing the third book. Eager to get my hands on it. And thankyou soo much for your efforts in giving us WONDERFUL books to read. Loads of wishes to you Preeti. May we be blessed with many such incredible books :)

    So very much missed this place. Reading all your earlier blog entries now :)

  11. Wow! In the 2 years that I've been reading your blog, you've already written 3 books! Gosh! Where did the time go, am truly still staring at my computer? Major kudos, Preeti!
    Don't cut yourself short, Preeti. Just sitting in front of the computer for hours on end definitely doesn't work, one needs a beautiful mind as well :)

    You just put me to utter shame! (I need some chulubar paani now)


    P.S: May I just say, and I hope you don't mind, you've one helluva good looking friends out there! ;p

  12. Preeti, What you said is absolutely true, to have that much of dedication and motivation and to push yourself till the finish.
    Like I am very good at initiating new things but taking it to completion is something which I cannot seem to do and writing a book would be really pushing myself ..lots of dedication required :)

    You rock, congrats on completing the third.

  13. Just wanna remind u am a journo, and have been writing n getting my articles published since like I was in 9th Grade :)

  14. yay..wonderful to hear that we could be reading your next book in about 6 months :) absolutely love your work. I have missed a lot of your posts in the recent past, need to find some time this week and read all of them. :)

  15. YAY :)! Very proud of you for pushing yourself beyond your boundaries.....it only means that the writing will be THAT good....looking forward to your book!

    I have not read any of Durjoy's books though - I skimmed through the titles and didn't interest me...which one would you recommend out of the five?

  16. Shachi: Thanks! :) :) About the question you asked I'd suggest, read synopsis and see. (I am not able to recommend any one over the other!)

    Shanthu:Thanks a lot!

    Basil: Good for you! So I will count on you for my interviews in all the major newspapers when book gets released ;-)

    Horizon:Thanks a lot.Yes, completing a book does require a LOT of motivation.

  17. Sparkling : heh heh. Thanks!! I don't mind at all! (and they are all single too , except the first one :P) LOL. (They are going to kill me if they read this comment :P ) :D Long time since I visited you. Coming over right now! :)

    Mridula:Thnak you so much. really appreciate :)

    Vipul:Thanks a lot!

    Pratima:Thanks so very much!

    NikhiL: ___________ (truly have no clue what to say when someone just leaves a smile and the post isnt even meant to be funny!)

    Santulan: Yes, difficult to not be over-critical on oneself when one is writing. Good luck with your book.

  18. hey sorry i did not mean the post was funny(promise),actually i dont know wat to post ,i felt happy that u completed the third book and am inspired by ur dedication and hardwork...(okay am a bit excited while writing this post ,coz this is the first time i am writing a reply to one of my favourite AUTHORs)

  19. All the best to you for your new book. your writing is a treat as well as a great inspiration and really looking forward to your next book

  20. Congrats!! , So now you have finished your 3rd book. I can feel the great mind work , hard labor and sacrifice involved with it.

    My wife is great admirer of your literary work. She insisted me to buy the two books written by you..and I loved the books very much, very soon we both became fan of your writing. My personal favorite is your first one.

    Thank you for sharing your experience regarding writing a book. Best wishes for your Book's success and "D I W A L I" also.
    Enjoy with crackers and sweets!!

  21. Looking forward for 3rd gem...congratz and have a happy diwali!!!

    Your friend was quite right..." She said that by the time I finish I will know who my real friends are. How rightly she said it!"

  22. "And at times, it gets very lonely"...very true...... lovely video...thanks for sharing......n all the very best for the next book......:-)

  23. it such a really nice blog made by good person..i love your writing..and by thh way this my first chance to see ur blog.

    love sms

  24. Wow...simply wow, and congrats on the completion of the 3rd book.

    Will watch the video now!!!

    p.s: where is Ramesh's picture??? I scanned the whole post 10 times & even waited 20 minutes thinking it didnt load properly. U posted everybodys picture but Ramesh's, not fair;-D


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