“I kept saying I’d take time off to focus on writing. And then one day I realized I’d gone from school to college to business school to my job but hadn’t taken time to write. So I did”, says Aditi Krishnakumar, author of the recently released book, “A Whole Summer Long”, while talking about her story, her career and the challenges:
How were you inspired to write A Whole Summer Long?
It was an idea I’d been toying with for a while. I always knew that I wanted my first book to be something light, something happy and fun. The setup and the basic plot occurred to me one day while I was watching My Fair Lady – I don’t know why, because there’s no connection between that story and this one. And then everything fell into place.
After a five year long career in Finance, was the idea of writing a sudden thought or an early dream?
Writing is something I’ve always wanted to do. I love books – I love reading them – and I’ve known for some time that I also love creating them. Somehow something always got in the way. I kept saying I’d take time off to focus on writing. And then one day I realized I’d gone from school to college to business school to my job but hadn’t taken time to write. So I did.
What was the idea behind choosing a 70’s setting over one of the present era?
There were two reasons for that. One was the plot – for the kind of comedic plot I had in mind, I wanted a time and place without instant communication. No cell phones and no Internet. The other reason was that I wanted something of an idyllic setting. It’s very difficult – for me it was difficult – to turn the world I live in into an idyll. It’s too near and too personal. The 70s were just far enough removed to allow that freedom.
But I think the setting is only relevant as far as the technical details go – you know, did they have supermarkets, how expensive was a train ticket, stuff like that. The way individuals think and act probably hasn’t changed that much.
What challenges did you face as an author of your first book?
Discipline was a big one – probably the biggest challenge you face as a modern writer. You’re working on your own time and you’re answerable to nobody, so it’s very easy to waste the entire day on Facebook or surfing the Net. You have to be way harder on yourself than any boss could be.
It can also be a little difficult to get people to take you seriously if you’re a first-time writer.
What should your readers look forward to, while they pick a copy of A Whole Summer Long?
It’s a fun book. That’s what I was going for. It doesn’t elevate or instruct, and I don’t think it deals with any major social issues. What I was trying to achieve – and I hope I’ve been successful – was to write a book that would leave people smiling, and just a little happier after reading it than they were before.
Which was the most interesting part of the book while writing?
My favourite part was writing conversations. I think in a lot of places I wound up using conversations to push the plot ahead because it’s so much more fun to write people talking than to describe actions. The hardest part was the titles, I ran through four or five working titles before I finally settled on “A Whole Summer Long“.