Monday, July 10, 2017

Author Interview: Sanjana Chowhan

About the Author

A recovering TV journalist from big, bad Bombay, when Sanjana is not inhaling large amounts of caffeine or people watching, she's vociferously talking politics or religion. 
Besides broadcast, radio and digital media experience, she has written for the Atlantic, The Establishment, The Debrief and the Quint, on a host of topics ranging from psychological disorders like prosopagnosia to rubbishing the pretentiousness of Kale salad. 
Armed with an open mind, foul mouth, a pretty good sense of humour (if she says so herself) and a penchant for the undiscovered, Sanjana currently lives in Mumbai, but plans to span the universe, one galaxy at a time. 
She currently writes on food, gender and politics and also dabbles in erotic fiction.


When did you first realize that you wanted to be a writer/ a storyteller?

I’ve always wanted to be a writer. My Std 1 teacher told my mom I should definitely be a journalist and I totally veered in that direction. However erotic fiction was entirely accidental and at the behest of my encouraging editor, Trisha Bora.

What motivates you to write and where does your inspiration come from?

Sex drives everything. Subconsciously and consciously, it motivates everything. So pretty much everything inspires me to write. However, I thrive on sexual tension and imagining even the most non sexual people in their rawest forms and that really pushes me when it comes to writing erotica.

Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it?

Oh my god, all the time. I just go running, it always helps and allows me to people watch and come back and write.

Why did you choose to write in your particular field or genre? If you write more than one, how do you balance them?

“I didn’t choose the erotic life, it chose me.” Just kidding, I am also a journalist and largely write about gender rights and politics when I’m not talking erotica. However, since I write erotica every month, I try to give my characters new dimensions each time. I also try to play around with styles, so the story won’t always follow the same structure.

What do you do if inspiration strikes in an inconvenient place like (car, restaurant, bathroom/shower, etc..) and how do you capture that moment before it gets away from you?

While I am often deemed as scatter brained and forgetful by my friends and family, I have fantastic memory. Nonetheless, since I am touching 30 I make a note in my phone diary and even write my feelings around it at that time so that my writing has that much more colour to it.

How do you think you have evolved as a person/author because of your writing and do you believe your writing has helped others, how/why?

This is a goody. I hope I’ve helped people because I have the most unlikely of aunties coming up to me and telling me how they absolutely loved my books. Seeing people comfortable with voraciously consuming erotica unabashedly makes me happy. It’s not something that I set out to do, but if it’s happening and I’m a part of it, that’s bloody cool. Besides broadening my vocabulary and really trying to tell sex differently each time, I think writing erotica has been cathartic. Not to sound deep, but it is a study of human emotion and writing about it in different scenarios with people of all shapes and sizes has only added another facet to my personality.

What is the intended audience for you book?

Really everyone. But I want people who otherwise would deem it smut, to read my books.

Give us a fun fact about your book(s)?

I always keep it cheeky. I can’t do dark and mysterious ya.

What makes a good story, why?

Fantastic structure. You’re leading the reader on and that is really half the job done.

Do you read your reviews? Do you respond to them, good or bad? Do you have any advice on how to deal with the bad?

I have received some really great reviews and the bad ones are only people who have accused me of being a ‘smut peddler’ and propagator of the New World Order. I first wanted to respond to everyone, but that’s not always a great idea. Appreciate the good stuff, absorb the constructive criticism and laugh at the vitriolic trolls, always!

Do you view writing as a career, labor of love, hobby, creative outlet, therapy, or something else?


Do you have a subject/genre you would never write about, why?

Maybe business and finance. My bank account and statements are proof.

What makes your book stand out from the crowd?
It’s really unromantic

About the Book

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Thank you, Ms Chowhan for this amazing interview! I wish you success for all your future works. Keep writing!