It’s the season of debut authors making their mark and amongst them is 26-year-old Anjali Kirpalani. She has joined the ranks with her novel Never Say Never. Anjali happens to be a media professional who started off as an RJ and then she moved on to be the editor of the fashion website stylekandy.com. She is now an anchor and producer with ET Now. She speaks to The Punekar about her foray into writing a book and much more.
Please tell us about your debut novel. How did the idea originate?
The book is a chicklit and the story is about how life has a plan of its own for you. The book is on me in my phase in life where I did not know certain things. The same is for the character. A lot of those in their 20s face the same. They have a lot of options and can do a lot but are confused. A lot of them would relate to the protagonist Nikita. She starts off being unemployed like I went through at the time. It is a coming of age story.
How much of it was taken from your personal life?
A lot of the protagonist is based on me – the way I used to talk with my friends and so on. But it is still a fictional character. Everyone has gone through what she has gone, emotionally.
A lot of books by Indian authors these days are on similar topics – metro reads they are called. Are you not scared of getting lost in the lot?
At the end, if the story is good and gripping, it catches the interest of the readers and would do well. My style of writing and humour will come out. The feedback has been good. They found the writing fresh and unpretentious. I have read a lot of these books and they have tried to ape the West. The quirks in my book are found in India but they are not stereotypical and people can relate to them.
Debut authors these days struggle a lot in finding the right publishers. What about you?
When I finally went on the publisher, the task was quite daunting and initially a little frustrating. I also sent it to an agent who said he can change the story for me. But I believed in it. Fortunately, the publisher who was a friend of my boss and he told me to send him the story. Grapevine Publishers called and they selected the book within a month of sending it.
What are your views of the modern Indian writers especially the younger lot coming from the corporate background?
Writers are always a mix of good and bad. Some are good while some are not up to the mark. Today you have a great opportunity for young authors. But finally, readers will decide what they like.
What can the readers expect from Never Say Never?
You can expect a fun read with some great laughs. You can relate to it.