Thursday, October 30, 2014

Book Review: Unstoppable: The Incredible Power of Faith in Action by Nick Vujicic: True Soulful Inspiration

Nick Vujicic is a well known speaker and whenever he speaks in front of his more than thousands of audience, he has touched their soul and heart deeply thereby bringing a big impact in their life. His books on the same track have been able to motivate and inspire his readers. By profession Nick Vujicic is an advocate and his main focus in that field is to fight for equality in one's life. Despite a big setback of his life at the time of his birth, when he was born without limbs, he never let this hurdle come into his way to achieve tremendous heights in his life in such a way that most of the normal people do not achieve in their life. It seems as if nothing has been impossible for this spiritual soul.

Unstoppable: The Incredible Power of Faith in Action by Nick Vujicic is a wonderful 256 page inspirational story that was first published in 2012 by WaterBrook Press. It gets you hooked your mind and heart to it the moment you start reading it and soon you build an emotional connect with the flow of words as you move on. It is a light and simple read but immensely powerful in terms of conviction of positive power in the world and within you against all storms of life. The stories are painful as they touch the bleeding portions of life comprising of brutal realities and pains that come through. The stories are powerful enough to make you realize with the harshness of life and get you driven page by page, emotionally. 

This amazing book Unstoppable: The Incredible Power of Faith in Action by Nick Vujicic comprises of gracefully told stories of real life stories of people who had to fight against the tides, against all odds. These true stories told in such an inspirational way are truly going to touch every reader's heart and will definitely enhance their inner strength and encouragement to help them in fighting their individual fight of life.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Author Interview: Suzy Duffy: Romantic Comedy With A Strong Sense Of Irish Humor: Lincoln Ladies

Did you always want to be a writer?

Yes. Ive been writing for as long as I can remember.  I wrote my first play when I was only nine. Then I hand delivered it into RTE Irelands National Radio & television Network   It was during the troubles in Ireland and the Irish Army were protecting the place from behind sand bags but I didnt mind as I marched up with my pencil written manuscript.  I remember the receptionists looking amused when I explained why I was there. They probably thought it was a hoot.  Not me, I was very serious about my career.  In due course, I got an incredibly kind and supportive rejection letter. They explained that the plot needed a little more development.  I wish I still had that letter my first rejection.

When did you first consider yourself as a writer"?

A job becomes a real job when you do it five days a week and get paid for it.  I reached that stage with writing about twelve years ago.  Then I had to stop because our family life got too hectic. I have five kids.  Now theyre all at school, Im a writer again phew.

Did it take a long time to get your first book published?

No, I was very lucky. I got a publishing offer half way through my first book.  I was living in Ireland at the time and sent the first ten chapters to Irish Publishers, Poolbeg They offered me a three book deal.

Do you have a process or routine that you follow when writing

This is what I aim for but dont always achieve.  I drop the kids to school and then get my bum on that seat but it so easy to get distracted - Emails, phone calls, group texts waghh.  I always start with new writing.  After lunch I deal with editing. Midafternoon its time to get the kids and 3 8pm Im a full time mom, homework monitor, cook and taxi driver.  After 8pm I often head back to my desk for fun stuff like marketing, PR, interviews like this.

What books can we expect from you in the future?  Any works in progress?

Lincoln Ladies is the 3rd book in my New England Trilogy.  I love the story and thoroughly enjoyed writing it. I wrote three books in three years which was a big work load so after that, I took some time out. Now Ive just begun a series of books set in Silver Strand, Sligo, Ireland.  I grew up in Sligo and know it well. Im very excited about it and will post more on my FB page as the plot develops

What genre do you write? Do you stick with this religiously?

Ive always written romantic comedy, with a strong sense of Irish humor because as a race we really do laugh at life.  Years ago, starting my broadcasting career, I worked with a fabulous man called Ian Dempsey He gave me some excellent advice, telling me to be myself and not try to mimic anybody on air. An audience can sense if youre fake.  They may not be able to put a name on it but theyll know.  That advice served me well on air and I think its equally valid for books. If youre going to make a success of your profession, no matter what it is, be true to your inner voice.  If it rings true and you persevere - chances are youll succeed in the end.

Do you have a favorite book out of the ones that you have written? 

Right now its got to be Lincoln Ladies.  I love Tuscany which is why I used it as the backdrop.  Theres a magic quality to the countryside there. Its the perfect place to enjoy all that amazing fresh pasta, super Tuscan wines, and maybe fall in love? Youll have to read Lincoln Ladies to see what I mean.

How important is humor in you works?

Very. I think we are what you read - at least I am. If I read a depressing book, it makes me depressed.  Im reading The Secret Garden with my youngest daughter at the moment. Written in 1910, the language is quiet old fashioned. Yesterday I found myself fetching some afternoon tea, like the Lady Dowager of Downton Abbey - instead of just grabbing a coffee.  Thats the power of books and so; I choose to right humor into my books. Its my gift to the reader.  I write funny escapist female fiction.  If I give the reader a few giggles and the odd belly laugh along the way, Ive done my job.

Do you get feedback from anybody close to you before you submit them?

I have literary agents. I aim to get a story well written, very well edited and polished. Then they take it to the market. Its an exciting and terrifying time.  Once its with a publishing house, Ill work with the in-house editors.  Theyll have particular views on strong and weak characters/plotlines. I listen to them and usually obey. This is a business. Books are the product. Its not a time to be precious. Sorry if that sounds hard-nosed but its the difference between writing being a hobby and a job.

How do you approach reviews? Have you had many negative ones? Do you read them?

I read them all. Ive been very lucky with the New England Trilogy. Most were very complimentary but I cant take all the credit. My publishers The Writers Coffee Shop, have an amazing team of editors.  A book is a team effort.  I have had a few bad reviews. Meh.  Let em go, I say. You cant please everybody.

Tell me about the covers for the New England Trilogy; you seem to use a particular theme and style?

I LOVE LOVE LOVE them.  I used the company out of Donetsk in Ukraine. Im thinking of them a lot at the moment because that is the town in the center of the Russian/Ukrainian conflict right now.  Im in touch with the girls in the office and they hear bombs going off nearby. Its surreal their word not mine.  Love and prayers for them please.  One of their artists came up with the animation style.  I love it because; as you well know you cant tell a book by its cover only with mine, you get a few hints. There was a black cat and a red Ferrari in Wellesley Wives - just like the book cover. We have a little white dog and a house on the lake, in Newton Neighbors and yes there are hairy sheep in the Tuscan hills in Lincoln Ladies. Enough said, youll have to read the books to get the full story

Lots of love Suzy

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Book Review: God Is A Gamer by Ravi Subramanian: A Journey of Scandals, Murders, Heists and Money Laundering

God Is A Gamer by Ravi Subramanian is a crime story plotted in an international arena involving political leaders of the United States and India; investigation agencies of both the countries and some high level banking professionals. There are many interesting characters in the story. Their journey starts in isolation in the beginning chapters of the story but later all the links between them come into light gradually. Story starts with an international bank NYIB (New York International Bank) with its operations in India. Three friends - Aditya, Swami and Sundeep. Aditya and Sundeep move out of the bank and start their own organization eTIOS to handle banking operations as an outsourced agency. NYIB is the first bank to outsource them for their operations. Aditya and Sundeep are also engaged in running their gaming industry launching online games from time to time. 

Swami was aspiring to become overall operations head in a short time until he gets a big jerk in his career, when Malvika (his boss) sends a confidential negative report about his performance to the Asia Pacific Headquarter of the bank. This all resulted from a heist that takes place in the country and customers lose money in fake money withdrawals through ATMs from their account. Then there are murders, more heists on a larger scale, involvement of many international names in scandals, murders, heists etc.

My View:
I became a die hard fan of Ravi Subramanian when I first read his book The Bankster (reviewed here) in November 2012. This is fifth fiction novel from Ravi and all of his stories revolve around crime related to banking in one way or the other. Having a large amount of his career spent in various portfolios in banking, he is probably aware of in and out of banking business. He also has a non fiction to his credit. Overall story is quite interesting and keep you hooked to the plot throughout 300+ pages. The virtual money floating over the internet in large amounts is an interesting bit in the story.

Somewhere in the story, Varun visits Tanya's residence and is stopped abruptly when he is taking a bottle of wasabi nuts from one of the shelves in the kitchen to taste some nuts. Varun likes Wasabi Nuts and hence could not stop himself for this action. Tanya immediately stops him with a reason that the bottle has crossed its expiry date and hence let him not take nuts from this bottle. She brings another bottle for him. This is something that Ravi would have kept as a point to be talked about at the end when the suspense is being disclosed, but probably forgot it or skipped it.

You will feel it a quick read and running the book faster as each chapter is not more than 2-3 pages. Otherwise also story has been kept crisp and moving at a right pace to keep you engaged throughout. The story is about good and bad, crime and investigation, law and violations. Bigger the crime, more is the research and analysis required to reach to the crux of crime and criminals. Ravi might have plans to come out with a sequel to tackle Varun later. As far as title is concerned, more than God, it is the human mind that is behind all crime related plannings and executions. The crime becomes so big that law is forced to crack it but still a criminal with a different bend of mind is still able to play with the law and give a twist to the final outcome.

This review is a part of the biggest Book Review Program for Indian Bloggers. Participate now to get free books!

Author Interview: Janaki Murali: Tender Tales: The Colour of Dawn: Gulu Naami: Mica in Someplace Else

She rejoices in fiction, revel in fantasy and love to tell a tale. She writes for both adults and children.
Her work includes short stories in several magazines, Tender Tales, a serialised children's adventure in a daily newspaper (Deccan Chronicle), The Colour of Dawn (Harper Collins India) (read review here), Gulu Naami and the Power of the Triad (Partridge India), the first part in the Gulu Naami series and Mica in Someplace Else (autopilot:Spoilt Ideas) in memory of Aagneya (2005-2014).

A crusading journalist (perhaps), a soft skills trainer (maybe), mom to a son and daughter (always) and a friend to stray cats (sometimes). her likes include the Beatles, books, movies, theatre and travel. She live in Bangalore, India.

Welcome Janaki!

Your real name and pen name?
Janaki Murali – I write under my own name. I am called Jana by friends and family.

Please share some of the best memories of your childhood
My dad used to take my brothers and me on an annual outing to a film and dinner. ‘Hatari’ was a film I remember seeing on one of these outings. Mom would give me surprise treats, by coming to my school to pick me up and take me to a restaurant. She bought me my first book, ‘Hidden House’ by Enid Blyton and dad was always the first one to read my work.

About your education
BA English literature and then went on to do Journalism

What career did you plan during your education days
Writing, always writing.
Addressing a Summer camp
What languages you can speak and write?
I can speak English, Hindi, Tamil, Kannada, a smattering of Malayalam and Bengali, but prefer to write only in English, although I have learned to write Hindi, but never do.    

What is your biggest source of inspiration in life
Books. There have always been some great authors and their books that have inspired me at various phases of my life.

What hurts you most in this world
Harsh words
fantasy session at Bangalore litfest
What is the biggest challenge you have faced? How did you overcome it?
There have been several challenges in my life, I don’t want to go into boring details here, but I found prayer a big help in surmounting them.

If you had to live a day of your life as one of the living or dead personality, who would it be and why?
I would love to be Margaret Thatcher for a day. She battled prejudices and stereotypes and become the Iron Lady.

 What is your favourite genre and why?
Children’s fantasy and humour. It’s so wonderful to escape into a fantasy world, rejoice and revel in it and subtle humour, is so much fun to read.
reading at a bookstore
When did you start writing? What is the purpose of your writing?
I started writing as a child, I would invent stories in my head. My first short story was published when I was 16 years old. Writing is my passion, I write because I am. I hope my readers get as much pleasure from my articles and stories, as I get in writing them. 

Which of your work has been published so far? Would you like to share a synopsis of your work?
As a journalist, I have written several articles and columns in newspapers. Many of my short stories were published over the years in magazines. Tender Tales, a children’s adventure series was featured in Deccan Chronicle. My published books are, The Colour of Dawn (HarperCollins), Gulu Naami and The Power of the Triad (Partridge India), and Mica in Someplace Else (authopilot:Spoilt Ideas) Recently my short story, Smile, There’s Only This Life, got published in a literary e-zine, The Earthen Lamp Journal
The Colour of Dawn
The Colour of Dawn is about a woman’s struggle to bury a past that crowds into her present. It is about an unfulfilled love that turns vindictive.

The novel is an exploration of a hot and sultry cauldron of cultures awaiting the rain, after a series of nuclear blasts raised tension between two rival countries. 
With a powerful blend of irony, drama and pathos, Janaki Murali delineates the universal nature of fear and its effect on human lives and destinies and leaves you wondering whether love can be so crippling!
Gulu Naami and The Power of the Triad:
Dive deep into the bowels of a volcano in the Bay of Bengal and meet the fire-breathing Mrigas, shape-shifting Bahulas, four-headed Gufiyas and the special unugly Gulu. Watch them as they employ insects of espionage and wield weapons of fantasy.

See a whole new world through the eyes of three earthlings who learn to stand united after losing a parent, and are pulled into a chain reaction that is about to shake up the entire galaxy.
Building on influences from Asia, Africa and the ancient language of Sanskrit, Janaki Murali takes readers on a phantasmagorical journey.
Mica in Someplace Else:
Everyone has a talent in Someplace Else and eight year old Mica Mishti, who is magically transported to Someplace Else, must find a talent real soon, to escape being axed.

In an adventure that was waiting to happen, Mica meets King Ginger, who yearns to fly, Gold Button, who heads a troop of button soldiers and one eyed Gren, who becomes her ally and friend. 
Mica in Someplace Else was written around nine year old Aagneya’s sketches. Saluting Aagneya’s indomitable spirit in fighting chronic kidney disorder and the joy he brought to people through his drawings, the book is in his memory. Aagneya (2005-2014)

What are your forthcoming writings?
Gulu Naami and the destiny keepers - 2nd book in the Gulu Naami series, a collection of short stories and a novel titled Following the Light Home- this has been 13 years in the making. 

Your origin of birth and other countries you have visited/ stayed. What best things you liked in these countries around the globe?
I was born in Calcutta (Kolkata) West Bengal. I have travelled across the USA, UK, Europe, Singapore, UAE, Kuwait, Egypt and Israel. My favourite cities are London, Paris and San Francisco. I like these cities because they’re so culturally alive, pulsating with art, music, theatre and the best wining and dining options.
signing the facebook wall, Menlo park, US
Your favorite time of the day?
Mornings, sitting with my coffee and working on a Sudoku in my morning newspapers.

Your zodiac/ sunsign?

Your favorite color and why?
Blue, it’s such a pleasant colour.

What is the last book you finished reading? What is the current book you are reading?
I read Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate factory last week, and I am currently reading Markus Zusak’s The Book Thief.

Your favorite book and why?
Golden Gate by Vikram Seth. I marvel at the sheer brilliance of Seth’s achievement of writing a whole novel in verse.

Your favorite movie and why?
Godfather for its characterisation and the sheer expanse of the film

Your favorite celebrity and why?
Meryl Streep for the sweep of roles she has essayed.  

Your favorite food?
Pasta and Chaat

Some quickies: Sun or Moon, Laughter or Smile, Morning or Evening, Coffee or Tea, Mountain or Sea, Long Drive or Short Drive, Silence or Conversation, Water or Fire, Air or Earth, Mars or Jupiter, Tulip or Rose, Red or Blue, Left or Right, Glance or Stare
Sun. Smile. Morning. Coffee. Mountain. Long Drive. Silence. Water. Air. Mars. Tulip. Blue. Right. Glance.

What three words come to your mind for each – Technology, Life, God, Humanity, Terrorism, Racism, Childhood Abuse, Love, Parenting, Old age
Technology – faceless, distant, reach
Life-Emotional, exciting, exasperating
God- Is there one?
Humanity-Complex, Caring, Crass.
Terrorism- Misguided, angry people.
Racism- Be human first
Childhood Abuse- It frightens me.
Love -Unconditional, warts and all.
Parenting-Enjoyable, frustrating, stressful.
Old age- Lonely, friendless, losing control    
State your signature line/ tagline/ best quote
Do your best

The last line of your autobiography would be…
I did my best

Amazon link: Gulu Naami and The Power of the Triad:
Mica in Someplace Else:

Author Interview: Veena Nagpal: The Uncommon Memories of Zeenat Qureishi: A Novel Of Then And Now

She was ten when she was caught reading in the bathroom late into the night.  Her mother banned her from reading ‘story books’ for a whole month. She decided if she couldn’t read, she’d write her own stories. That night in a naval apartment in the then city of Bombay, Veena Nagpal’s passion for writing was born.
She now lives in a small house with her husband and lots of plants in Noida.

The Uncommon Memories of Zeenat Qureishi is Veena’s third novel to be published. She has also penned four books for children and numerous short stories.

1. Your real name and pen name? 
Veena Nagpal
No pen name

2. Please share some of the best memories of your childhood
Somehow a lot of my fondest childhood memories seem to center round my father - cycling with him to watch him play cricket, listening to his rendition of Shakespeare’s plays, discussing with him life’s ups and downs...
As a family we travelled a lot by road - from Kashmir to Kerala, from Orissa to Bombay – and those are also some of my best childhood memories.

3. About your education
As a naval officer’s daughter, I went to school all over the country. I did my high school from St. Joseph’s Visakhapatnam. My name is still up on the school board as a gold medallist.
I graduated with English Literature as one of my subjects, from Loreto College, Lucknow.

4. What languages can you speak and write?
Sadly only two – English and Hindi

6.  What is your biggest source of inspiration in life?
That I think would be travel…
I seem to have an insatiable need to travel – must have been born with some gypsy blood!
I seem to come alive just seeing new places, meeting new people, vicariously experiencing lives so totally different from mine – and I don’t mean always visiting exotic foreign destinations…
It is so exhilarating e.g. to talk to toddy tappers, watch them climb tall coconut trees. See an elephant being captured, chat with a lighthouse keeper or a kite maker. Or just simply walk into the nearest slum wander down narrow lanes visualizing the lives, thoughts and ideas of people who live there.
Of course I’ve had my share of exotic experiences too. Once I’ve watched circus animals being loaded on a merchant ship, each elephant being strapped down hoisted up the ship’s crane and lowered on to the deck…

7. What hurts you most in this world.
Insincerity - people who can talk so sweetly to your face without meaning a thing, who can make tall promises with no intention of honoring them. They get my goat.

8. What is the biggest challenge you have faced? How did you overcome it?
Pain. Constant physical pain – I have a back problem.  I can’t really overcome it, in the sense that I can’t make it disappear but with sheer doggedness I have learnt to live with it.

9. If you had to live a day of your life as one of the living or dead personality, who would it be and why?
Mother Theresa – she managed to make an impact every minute of her life.

10. What is your favorite genre and why?
Literary fiction. I like writing that not only tells a good tale but also gives an insight into another perspective, another life, another world. Writing that touches my heart and soul and leaves me with thoughts and ideas that stay with me long after I have finished reading.
at a function in Foyles, one of the largest book stores in London
11. When did you start writing? What is the purpose of your writing?
If by ‘writing’ you mean writing that has been published, I started only in my twenties, doing features for newspapers and magazines. 
I write because I need to find meaning in my life. I write because I just have to get something out of my system – some questions, some emotions that left unexpressed would otherwise just fester within me and make me ill.

12. Which of your work has been published so far? Would you like to share a synopsis of your work?
Three novels:
My latest novel is ‘The Uncommon Memories of Zeenat Qureishi’

The book is about a twenty-year old girl who, traumatized by communal conflicts, spontaneously regresses into memories of past lives spanning centuries. Memories so powerful they start getting automatically broadcast on television, blocking out all other channels.
Sucked into her reminiscences of power brokers manipulating love and revenge, murder and greed, an entire people finds itself at crossroads
My earlier novels:
‘Karmayogi’ published by Jaico and ‘Compulsion’ by Sterling.
My Books for children:
‘Tenderella and the FoFs’ published by Environment Education Promoters.
‘Garbie Garbyhog: The Worm that wanted to Fly’ published by Environment Education Promoters.
‘Smugglers’ Isle’ published by Hemkunt and
‘Adventures in Space and Time Travelers’ published by India Book House.

13. What are your forthcoming writings?
My next novel, tentatively titled ‘The General Who Lost it’ or ‘Daayara – A Limited Circle’, is the story of a fragile love helplessly caught in the cross fire of two nuclear powered nations warring over limited water resources.
The book is in the editing stage.
It is inspired by a real life situation. Thirty kilometers north of the Indo China border, China is building the Yarlung Tsangpo dam on the Brahmputra to divert its waters into the Yellow River. This would deny basic rights to millions downstream on this trans-national river and lead to widespread destruction of farms and townships.
I am also well into writing another novel after this.

14. What genres you write in and why?
I aspire to write literary fiction because that’s the kind of work I like to read – of course my editors don’t always agree that my writing fits the bill!
‘The Uncommon Memories of Zeenat Qureishi,’ e.g. has been classified a Suspense/Drama.

15. What keeps you motivated towards writing?
You don’t need to keep yourself motivated to do what you love doing. You just do it.

16. If Writing a Book is taken as a project, what are the key essentials you take care of in Project Management?
a. Conceptualization – this would mean writing out a draft plot.
b. Characterization – Detailing each character, his/her physical and mental characteristics, his/her history.
c. Reworking the plot – by this stage the characters have chopped and changed and sometimes wreaked havoc on the draft plot to suit their own needs. While their needs have to be met, sometimes the needs of the plot may become dominant and a particular character may have to be altered even axed.
d. Writing a detailed chapter-wise synopsis.
e. Writing the book
f.  Keeping the book on the back burner for a minimum of six months.
g. Editing
h. Repeat the editing stage until I can’t stand to look at it any more.

17. What are your future plans?
As far as I can gaze into the crystal ball, I can only see myself writing – and reading and hopefully travelling. There is so much of the world I have yet to see.

18. What is, generally, your preference in reading – a paper book or ebook? And why?
I know, I know all about the smell of books, the feel of books but I have become a total convert to e-books. Basically because of the physical convenience – I can carry a whole library with me wherever I go. Holding the book I am reading is so much lighter – this matters when I want to read in bed. And really, once I get engrossed in the writing I actually forget whether it’s a paper book I’m holding or my kindle!
BUT – let me tell you a little secret - I still have my book shelves in my study where my old ‘friends’ reside and yes I do have my love moments with them when I touch, feel, smell…

19. What four top most things you take care of while writing a book?
Characters, Dialogue, Plot and the Beginning and Ending

20. How much real life goes into fiction writing?
I’ve heard a lot of people say you can only write well about things you have lived through and personally experienced.
To my mind if a fiction writer was to restrict herself to only what she has experienced it would narrow her field terribly. Fiction calls upon a writer to create a world that does not exist. The writer has to be able to ‘live’ any character in any situation, in order to create new worlds.

21. Is high level of imagination important to have for an Author?
Absolutely essential.

22. Your dream destination on Earth?
A room somewhere, far away from daily life’s care…
A room where I could be alone with my imagination – and a laptop!

23. Your country of birth and other countries you have visited/ stayed.
I was born in Lucknow, India.
I’ve travelled a lot – Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, Korea, Australia, Sardinia, Spain, Italy, Brazil, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Venezuela, Turkey, United States, UK, France…

24. What best things you liked in these countries around the globe?
I have loved:
Amsterdam – for its old houses with their feet dipping into the canals criss-crossing the city, its flower markets, its cycle tracks, its buskars and its street performers and for Anne Frank’s house…
Istanbul for the Bosphorus beating at its shores, for its history so vividly alive at every nook and corner, its vibrant inclusive culture, the warm hospitality of its friendly people, its luscious fruits and vegetables…
Cappadocia for its unbelievable ‘fairy chimneys’ landscape and its tourist friendly services…
Miraflores in Peru, where people spontaneously burst into song and dance on the streets and artists are waiting to sketch your portrait in just a few strokes…
Kyoto in Japan, for its old world charm, its oh-so-gentle-polite people; Aqaba in Jordan for its crystal clear waters and for the ruins of Petra... and so many more places.
And I have loved – and envied – every place I have ever visited for the cleanliness of their cities.

25. Your favorite time of the day?
Nine in the morning to one in the afternoon – because that has always been my ‘me’ time.
My family has generally respected this simply because they have realized that if I don’t get it, I tend to turn into one irritable, crotchety, hard-to-tolerate female.

26. Your zodiac/ sunsign?
I was born on 23rd April.

27. Your favorite color and why?
Two colors – deep red for its vibrant dynamism and yellow for its bright cheerfulness.

28. What is the last book you finished reading? What is the current book you are reading?
Recently finished: IQ 84
Currently reading: Bring up the Bodies

29. Your favorite book and why?
Gone with the wind – for its two unforgettable characters, Scarlett O’Hara and Rhett Butler.

30. Your favorite movie and why?
Sound of Music – for portraying so beautifully how zest for life can overcome the most insurmountable of difficulties.

31. Your favorite celebrity and why?
Amitabh Bachan. I am not a particularly great fan of his film roles. But I once heard Anupam Kher talk about an incident on some film set where everyone was disgruntled because it was very hot and the AC was not working.
It seems Amitabh was sitting in one corner of the room, wearing a blanket around his shoulders because the role he was to shoot for required it, absorbed in a book he was reading. When Anupam asked how he could bear to sit like that in the heat his smiling answer was “If you think it is hot it is, and if you don’t it isn’t”
I was bowled over. By the man’s humility, his detachment and his total focus on what he was doing.
I do admire his acting for the credibility he has brings to even the silliest role he has ever played.

32. Your favorite food?
Dahi - and all sorts of fruits

33. Your favorite sports?

34. What is the force that drives you?
Some inner force maybe – hard to define…

35. What comes to your mind when you think of India?
Color. Noise. Hustle bustle. Loud and large hearted people. Young people full of energy and enthusiasm. Raring to go.
And – hang down our heads in shame - the garbage and the filth everywhere.
I am so ashamed that some years ago I started the Garbyhog project for school children – personally going to schools, motivating children with AV presentations, giving them my Garbyhog book, and showing them a practical alternative to littering bio-degradable garbage all over – viz. vermicomposting.
A drop-in-the-ocean effort yes, but an effort nevertheless…

36.  Some quickies: Sun or Moon, Laughter or Smile, Morning or Evening, Coffee or Tea, Mountain or Sea, Long Drive or Short Drive, Silence or Conversation, Water or Fire, Air or Earth, Mars or Jupiter, Tulip or Rose, Red or Blue, Left or Right, Glance or Stare, Fame or Money, Boy or Girl, Day or Night, Tree or Plant, Love or Passion

Sun, Laughter, Morning, Coffee, Sea, Long Drive, Silence, Water, Air, Mars, Rose, Red, Right, Glance, Fame, Girl, Day, Plant, Passion

37. What three words come to your mind for each – Technology, Life, God, Humanity, Terrorism, Racism, Childhood Abuse, Love, Parenting, Old age
Technology – Smart, Future, Science
Life – Great, wonderful, beautiful
God – True, Humble, Me
Humanity – old, cruel, happy
Terrorism – Horrible, stupid, senseless
Racism – Obnoxious, idiotic, ridiculous
Childhood Abuse – vomit, toxic, ugly
Love – Forever, happy, lasting
Parenting – happy, loving, joy
Old Age – Lonely, Smiling, patient

38. First thing you do in the morning after waking up?
Fling open the curtains so I can see the world outside.

39. Last thing to do before sleep?
Cuddle up and thank God there is still love…

40. State your signature line/ tagline/ best quote

Signature line: An international voice rooted in ancient Indian wisdom
Tag Line: She’ll pull at your heartstrings she’ll set you thinking…
Best Quote:
“…every harsh word spoken, every such act or even thought doesn’t just disappear - it hangs around somewhere in totality and some day it boomerangs to haunt us.”
-         The Uncommon Memories of Zeenat Qureishi
Veena Nagpal

41. The last line of your autobiography would be…
Now I look towards the future and smile…

42. The title of your autobiography would be…
Loved to Live

Links & other relevant details:
ISBN-13: ISBN 978-81-8386-119-9
Publisher: Tara India Research Press
Twitter handle: @veenanagpal

Any other links:

2. THE UNDER-2 MINUTES BOOK TRAILER of The Uncommon Memories of Zeenat Qureishi AT:

3. Author Website: