Interview with Ankit Roy, author of 'The War of Canneti'
on Nov 24, 2021
Ankit Roy is the author of thrillers for both adults and teens. He was born in Bhopal and has lived most of his life there. When not writing, he can be found installing solar panels, working in his garage converting two wheels to electric, and haunting local bookstores.
The ignorance of the people on global warming and its effects made him pen down his first Sci-fi novel. He wrote short stories, unsuccessfully submitted a few of those stories for publication, and edited his company newsletter. But he didn’t take writing seriously until after he received praise for the stories in his newsletter. “I love working for the environment,” says Roy. “I love working with people . . . Maybe someday I’ll be able to make enough impact to start a mass movement. But for now, the books are keeping me very busy.”
Here is the Interview -
Ques - How did you come up with the idea of this story?
Ans: I wrote a short story one day to vent my anger on a public service employee who made some outrageous demands for a business deal I was involved in. The piece became a hit with over two lakh views and likes. It was about this guy on an earth-like planet fighting against an authoritarian state. That’s when I realized I could write this book.
Ques - The story protagonist - Madhav is a famous environmentalist and
an advocate against global warming. Does this character resemble you as
you mention your love for a healthy environment?
Ans: He is more like a person I’d like to be. He is this cool entrepreneur guy, techie, an expert in whatever he does, a glib talker, and a master strategist. Something I can never be! But yes, he loves nature as should everyone.
Ques - Why did you choose the Name ‘Canneti’ for the new world and what was your thought behind this new world?
Ans: Years ago, I played a game called Anne McCaffery’s Freedom. It had a race of super aliens who enslave earth. Canneti! That’s where I took it from. I later found out the source material. A trilogy by Anne McCaffery with exotic worlds, extraordinary animals and astonishing landscapes.
Ques - How did your affection for sustainable energy solutions grow?
Ans: I worked in a Mumbai firm as an engineer in the power distribution business. The demand for power I saw was astonishing. 40 lakh units of energy is required daily for a city like Nagpur. Now imagine this on a national scale. If you can do the math, you’d be uneasy too. We need a green energy revolution, and we need it soon!
Ques - ‘The War of Canneti’ is a very cliche Sci-Fi romance story. Why do you think that people would like to read your book?
Ans: The War of Canneti is more about adventure and travels across space. It hardly has any romance. Probably a hint of a relationship at the climax, but that’s that. The characters Shree and Madhav are like everyday people, with likes and dislikes, affection, and jealousy. But the focus is entirely on space travel, exotic locations, and alien warfare. It’s a book for anyone who would like to glance into a future that might very well happen someday as humans progress.
Ques- Share your writing experiences thus far.
Ans: I had a great time journeying through the pages of the book. As a writer, I understood that a story writes itself. Something unexplained makes way for the story to progress and the journey is as rewarding as for a reader. I enjoyed the endless nights, sleeplessly striking the keyboard of my ancient Acer Inspiron, checking on my one-year-old every now and then as he slept clutching his mother right beside me, and finally going to bed only to be woken up an hour later for office!
Ques - Why do you choose Self Publishing over Vanity Publisher?
Ans: I think self-publishing is a faster way to reach the audience than vanity publishing. As a writer, I have quite a few stories stacked up in my brain and self-publishing gives me the freedom and the control to complete a project and move on quickly.