Frontlist | eBooks helped people to stay optimistic amidst pandemic

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Q. Why did you choose to be an author?
Actually, I was all set to join the corporate world and study for an MBA, till I went for an
early morning walk on the beach. That walk was the turning point in my life. Unexpectedly
my thoughts began associating facets of the ocean’s waves with relevant slokas from the
Bhagavad Geeta. That momentous episode on the beach transformed my life in perpetuity.
Till that moment, my study of the Bhagavad Geeta entailed oral examples. By observing the
ocean, I could now effectively comprehend the wisdom of the Bhagavad Geeta through a
series of comparisons. This is the inspiration behind my first book.

Q. Besides writing, what are your other interests?
I teach different modalities in two-day or three-day workshops of 3-4 hours per day. I am a
certified Reiki Grandmaster (2001). I teach – How to read your Akashic Records, Money
Reiki, the practice of Ho’oponopono, and Automatic Writing. I also offer comprehensive
guidance through the use of Runes, Numerology and Channeling.

Q. What kind of authors do you read?
I read mainly spiritual commentaries of the Bhagavad Geeta and other motivating spiritual
literature. However, since I began writing Historical Fiction a few years ago, I have read
Amish Tripathi, Ravi Subramaniam, Christopher Doyle, Dan Brown and Dr. Manjiri Prabhu.

Q. How were your initial days as an author? Any pointers for newbies?
My initial days as an author were fulfilling since my first book sold over 5000 copies.
However, that wonderful run did not extend to my other books.
To all new authors – I would recommend grit and determination to forge ahead despite
difficulties in getting established as an author. Keep dreaming and strive to win awards that
will enhance your popularity.

Q. According to you, how to craft a bestseller?
Every book that we write, we presume will become a best seller. It is difficult to gauge
market swings and popularity yardsticks. However, having a huge following on social media
and being a distinguished celebrity definitely ensures better chances of a book becoming a
best seller. In the long run, only good content will ensure continual sales.

Q. As the Covid-19 pandemic hit the global industries, as a writer where do you think is
the Indian Publishing industry heading right now?
The Indian Publishing industry is growing immensely, and is poised for a huge growth as
readerships spirals and ushers in millions of young, first time readers too.

 

Hema Myer Sood on pandemic and Book Fairs

 

Q. What kind of role eBooks and audio books are playing during this pandemic?
There was a huge boost in the popularity of eBooks and audio books during this pandemic.
Unless you already had books at home; readers were compelled to buy eBooks and audio
books. I too, read many books on my Kindle since we could download the book in a few
minutes.

Q. In your views, how will the livesof people be changed after the pandemic of Covid-19?
It is difficult to predict behavioural patterns because no one knows the exact scenario of the
length of the pandemic and its social, political and economic repercussions.

Q. What are the major challenges faced by authors from writing to publishing?
The author has put in months/years of creativity and now they have to find a good
publisher. This is definitely a major challenge since 40% do not respond to our email
submissions. Thus, we are unaware of a rejection or the necessity to move on, thus
expending valuable time.

Marketing is one another challenge faced by authors since the publishers are too busy to
individually market and promote books. Thus, the author has to have a prominent social
media presence and spend time in connecting to and engaging with the readers to boost
sales.

Q. How did publishing your first book change your process of writing?
It gave me self-confidence to persevere in my writing career due to the overwhelming
success of my first book, which was very well received.
I learned immensely during the process of writing my first book about a planned structure
and thought flow. Since I am a Commerce graduate my initial foray into writing was purely
inspirational and passion driven. Over the years I honed my writing skills and am adept now!

Q. Do you think that learning in India is evolving with technological advancement? What
more can be done?
India has been taking giant strides in the field of technology

Q. Delhi Book Fair happened virtually this year, what is your perspective on the whole
scenario?
It was a positive acceptance of the ongoing scenario that is currently predominating
everyone’s lives. It was a wonderful opportunity for authors to reach out virtually, via the
medium of the Delhi Book Fair to readers and viewers across the world.

Q. In your views, how will the lives of people be changed after the pandemic of Covid-19?
I believe that people will become more grateful for what they currently have and will
operate from a sense of abundance rather than lack, which normally dominates our
thoughts. We will have lesser desires to fulfill, as movements are restrictive and
celebrations are limited.

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