Friday, June 03, 2016
Author Interview: Saumya Misra, author of 'A Grey Story'
Read up, the first part of the Interview with Saumya Misra, the author of 'A Grey Story'. In this one, she tells us how the book first happened, how Surya, the lead character came about, how she came up with the core idea of the book before developing it, what the challenging parts of the book were, and particular incidents in the book, that she felt she could relate to.
There is much more to come in the second part of this Interview, Folks…
How did ‘A Grey Story’ happen? Could you describe the journey?
‘A Grey Story’ is the result of what I have perceived in certain families around me. In the book I have dramatised the outcomes, in reality I have seen the ‘victim’ – or should I say ‘protagonist’—just get into a shell and lead a miserable life, and, believe me, such a ‘victim’ can be a very, very talented person who, if given a chance, could have outshone many in a number of fields. This is what pained me into writing this novel.
Why is society so callous towards individuals who are a little different from others? Why should there be such a lack of concern for a single person? Even family members—in fact mostly family members—are the ones to exploit timid, sensitive souls.
How did the main character, Surya come about? And what about the sisters and brothers?
Like I said, this novel may be a fiction but I have borrowed heavily from real life. I have seen a couple of real-life Surya’s and her kind of brothers and sisters.
This work is my way of telling the world that not everyone is blind to the plight of such people and if the society continues to treat certain ‘special’ kids with such disdain, the outcome can be very scary.
I even spoke to a couple of psychiatrists and they also said shabby treatment at an impressionable age can be very damaging. Thus, if you wish to turn into a parent, you should know your duties and responsibilities towards your children. No two kids can be brought up in a similar manner. It is the primary duty of the parents to understand the psychology and nature of their kids and ‘lead’ them accordingly.
What according to you is different about your book?
My book is different as it is not a narrative of ‘events’ or ‘outcomes’ but of ‘circumstances’. It is the tale of how a child can be unintentionally or intentionally be ‘harmed’ by one’s own family. Thus the cover page design—the hand with a chopped finger symbolises a disjointed family where one member has been harmed beyond repair.
It also propagates the idea of small families, where at least one parent should be committed to looking after the kids and bringing them up in the right manner. These days, with nuclear families and working parents, there are greater chances of special kids getting a raw deal.
Which particular character did you feel most close to? Why?
I do not feel close to any character. That is the reason I have been able to look at the subject with an unbiased mind. I have highlighted the mindset of each individual and not painted some black and others white.
My characters are all grey, which is the colour of the human being. I have researched well and dealt with the topic in a detached manner.
Any particular incidents in the book, that you feel you could relate to? Why?
There has not been any similar incident in my life but in the lives of a couple of people I know. I have seen individuals suffer for no fault of theirs but because it provided pleasure to their ‘near and dear’ ones. Such raw deals have to be exposed and people must be made aware that if they see families where a particular person is being made a scapegoat, they should speak up.