Monday, December 11, 2017

On Writing: Interview with Praveena Bhaduri

Today on 'On Writing', we have author Praveena Bhaduri, a very successful entrepreneur, mentor, dancer, a strong and inspirational woman who believes in the power of her dreams. 

Praveena wrote her first book a memoir "On the Kenyan Trail” in 2016 which was internationally published. Her passion for travelling, her reading, her mentoring, love of music and dance, love of languages coupled with years of experience and wisdom has fashioned her into an amazing person with a lot of Joie-de-vivre and reflects on every page she writes. 

Let us read what Praveena has in store for us. 

Welcome to 'On Writing', Praveena!

Praveena Bhaduri

Was becoming an author always your dream or was it a particular event or incident that gave birth to the author in you?

There were several factors, events that lead to the genesis of my writing. The first – my love of English Language and my mom is responsible for this. Though a  high school graduate, she spoke impeccable  QUEEN`S  English dotted with goodness gracious me `s and Oh My `s and so on. She inculcated the love of English language in me and in turn I, in my daughter.

 Two-- I am a voracious reader and cannot sleep until I have read some pages. I must have read at least about nine thousand Books. I read very fast but I  go back and savour something exquisite as well. I have an enormous collection of books lying around here and in my farmhouse. I used to shop for bestsellers every month without fail, not clothes and stuff. When I came back from Kenya, I carted all my books in a container beside other stuff. 

Three- Everyone used to tell me to write a book perhaps because I speak well and am a great storyteller both when I was I  in school and later to my daughter in Airport s to keep her from running around.  So I used to tell her stories  replete with  animal  sounds etc and soon found  from the ensuing silence my daughter had fallen asleep, but I had a huge crowd of adults listening to my story and they used to urge me to make a CD  for children  for precisely this  reason . and again, when I came back from Kenya I missed  It so much  that I penned a few lines as catharsis and soon found that I had written pages  and this gave birth to my First Book … ON THE  KENYAN  TRAIL.

 And, Finally, when I  discovered  That I had LUNG   FIBROSIS, my world fell apart when my doctor announced I had six months to live, in 2009.  I went into total depression, was blindsided, felt whiplashed,  always  WHY ME…….? I was alone, nobody to confide, a small teenager, my husband overseas, no point telling him far away.   Strangely in a  few days,  was my birthday and this man, My Husband sent me one hundred red roses wishing me a happy Birthday not knowing I was at death`s door. This man had rarely given me a rose before. He is of sterling silver character but not a romantic bone in his body. Anyway,  that turned me around and I said I will live the remaining days in the best positive manner I can, reinvented myself and threw myself into writing and so……

How important are the names of the characters in your books to you? Do you spend agonizing hours deciding on their names?

Not really, somehow these names in my book seemed to come on their own. My first book was a memoir so all the names were factual.
In Uchallambi  Icons, it seemed a natural progression as I had preconceived notions of even an ensemble film with Priyanka, Deepika, and Anushka so the names became Pia, Deepti, and Anushka…

What is your writing process like? Do you write every day? Is there a favorite place to write?
Mostly at night when it is very quiet.  Also, there is no other place for me to go as I am tied to the OXYGEN leash 24 x7 in my room in a wheelchair. I live in front of my PC. It's my world. My Only world.

4.What is different about ‘Uchallambi Icons’?

The fact that there was a true incident in my village in Kerala intrigued me, -- about the Devi statue etc as told in the book, and then my flights of fancy took over. I remembered reading stories of how these icons had magical powers etc and so wove them into a tale of suspense, intrigue, a   heavy dose of romance,  exotic locales of places I had been too and Viola  !!!!!!!!!!
So it is a new age fiction,  a rom-com thriller with a lot of excitement and a heavy texture of description which will make the reader feel they are actually experiencing it and a powerful climax!!!

5.Who is your favorite character in the book and why?

DEEPTI, perhaps because she is all warm and toasty, full of spunk, not so in the face but stands up for herself, not unnaturally aggressive but very much in control and yet fragile enough to succumb to emotions when they overwhelm her.

Which do you prefer as a reader? eBook or Paperback?

Though the ebook is convenient, nothing like the feel of a paperback. Somehow it is very tangible, and relish-able if you know what I  mean..

7.How long did it take to finish writing ‘Uchallambi Icons’?

Six months.

8.How important do you think is marketing in today’s world for any book?

Very important. I think writing the book is the easy part, marketing is the necessary evil  part of it. I am not a so in the face person and cannot handle this area of functionality to sell my own book. I have been the Group  General  Manager of Finance and Operations of  Scania ( a major stakeholder of VOLVO) for three countries, but I feel awful to advertise my own book. But it is an extremely important function these days.  Also, the market is very crowded these days with a lot more competition.

9.Please share a passage or quote from ‘Uchallambi Icons’ for our readers.

...THE ONE who called himself ‘MAndravad’ pressed the tip of
the needle against his shaved head, sighing with pleasure as the
sharp tool plunged in and out of his flesh. The soft hum of the
tool was addictive, as was the singeing of the flesh, the bite of the
needle and the sharp odour of the singed flesh, with the dye casting
its hues in the tattoo grooves. A macabre sight. The role of the
tattoo was never for beauty but as a part of the ancient ritual. A
hideous creature, his head shaved, and the crown covered with
symbols and tattoos. He had a feral look in his eyes. A clock
struck six thirty pm. He put down his tools, and looked in the
huge gilt-framed mirror as he wrapped a silk robe around his
nude six feet, three-inch frame and strode down the hall. The
whole ambient air smelt of skin dyes, the fragrance of incense and the
wax of candles as they melted. It was time…

10.What are the three tips you have for readers of this interview who are aspiring writers? 
  1. Follow your heart.
  2. Capture your dreams.
  3. Writing is a catharsis. It is self-healing. You will be amazed.           

Thank you, Praveena. This interview is undeniably the most inspiring one on my blog. More power to you!

Check out Praveena's book:


Buy the book from

Book Blurb:

Mumbai, maximum city, three very close friends Pia, Deepti and Anushka find themselves in possession of the legendary Icons and targeted for the same by this huge, tattooed Monster. Fragile Pia with a million rupees cash, a gun and an icon statue on her but no memory. Will  Rehan provide some answers?
Leggy gorgeous Deepti, whose chance collision with Amit Rajyavansh blows her peace of mind to smithereens as her life careens and spins out of control. But was it a chance collision. the timing seemed awfully suspicious.
Life coasted fine for Chief Inspector Sarin Malhotra until the beauteous  Anushka invaded his peace of mind. A face that haunted his dreams. In the scenic Nice, he is totally flummoxed when he finds himself staring down twin bores of a double-barreled gun held by the seemingly dead Anushka appearing very much alive …………

They have no place to hide and the relentless chase begins through the dusty Nairobi, the rain washed streets of Thailand and the cobbled streets of Nice and loops back to Mumbai where the huge tattooed creature awaits them and draws them insidiously into his web.
Are they mere marionettes whose strings are held by the  Monster?. will they be able to cut loose in time?
Mumbai, maximum city, three very close friends Pia, Deepti and Anushka find themselves targeted by this huge monstrous tattooed creature for the legendary icons which came into their possession inadvertently.  The relentless chase is on and the girls have no place to hide.   A terrifying journey begins through the sun-dappled streets of Nairobi, through the rain-lashed pavements of Bangkok and through the cobbled quaint boulevards of Nice until it loops back to Mumbai where it all began. Will the men in their life be of any help? Are they mere marionettes whose strings are held by the  Monster?. will they be able to cut loose in time? desperate answers are needed and time is running out as the tattooed Monster draws them insidiously into his web.

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  1. Writing is catharsis .Its self healing .the best way to tell the world all that we learnt.Thank you Preethi for telling us the story of an exceptionally brave lady .More power to her and my prayers with her too!

  2. A passionate interview between two intense writers make the interview totally worth reading, Praveena Bhaduri seems to be a lady made of steel who conquers and triumphed. I enjoy her reading and writing journey. It's incredible. I can imagine Priyanka, Deepika and Anushka as her heroines set in maximum city.