Blogchatter Author Interview Series- Roma Gupta Sinha

Roma Gupta Sinha

Roma Gupta Sinha is an acclaimed writer who has won the coveted ‘Woman of the Year’ Award in 2015 for her writings on Women Empowerment on her blog and the prestigious ‘Planet’s Pride Award 2018’ for her entrepreneurial venture RCA where she has been passionately grooming six to sixty-year olds for the last many years in her endeavour to give back to the society and aid in shaping the future of India.

Recently, she had been conferred with ‘Sahityakosh Samman 2021’ for her prolific works. After a ten year successful stint of working in Tata Motors, Honda Cars and IKEA of Sweden in different parts of the world, she eventually embraced her first love of writing and has six published books to her credit so far. She believes she is born for a purpose and yearns each day to be the face of positive change in the society she lives in. She is also the founder of Endometriosis Awareness and Support Group of India.

‘I Live to Love You’ was her sixth book released last year after her first release ‘Dare to Defy the Destiny’, a Hard-hitting non-fiction anthology released in 2016 did really well and her second, a chick let romance, ‘The Fragrance of True Love’ which was a soulful tale of two resonating hearts became a bestseller in 2017. Her third book ‘Destiny’s Favourite Child’, published in 2018, which is her candid autobiographical account, is her most read book so far. Women Empowerment is a subject closest to her heart and thus her fourth inspiring release was known as ‘Empowered Women Empower Women’ published in 2019. In 2020, during the first wave of the COVID pandemic when she got stuck in Vadodara, she penned a very unique book, ‘Soulful Letters On COVID, To My Future Grandchild’, comprising of letters to her future grandchildren on her COVID Experiences. Her seventh ‘Soft Strings of my Heart’ book is a collection of her choicest poetic compositions which give solace, power and peace. You can grab a copy of all six on Amazon at any time.

1. Hey Roma, congratulations once again dear for getting published in this thriller anthology by Blogchatter. How are you feeling after writing your first thriller story?

Thank you so much and yes it indeed means a lot to find a way into the first-ever Blogchatter Anthology especially because my earlier seven published books have all been released in the Blogchatter ebook Carnivals and so I find there is a karmic connection between my literary journey and Blogchatter. They are my second family and I owe so much to the beautiful team and the founders. 

Also, a thriller or a murder mystery is just not a genre I would have chosen even in my dreams so I was thrown out of my comfort zone when I decided to give it a try. With this story, I tried to push myself in unfathomed territories fearlessly and am so proud the results did turn out in my favor. Only Blogchatter can make me do this and I can’t praise them enough for always pulling out a lazy soul like me out of slumber.

 2. Please share the story behind the plot of The Secrets of Nandini Rutuja. Any real-life incident or your absolute imagination made you ink this thriller?

Well, in all honesty, Nandini Rutuja took birth in my brain and grew up there with all her madness and has no resemblance to any character or incident in reality at all. This story was totally shaped in my mind before I brought it down on paper. I had some teenagers coming to my academy in Pune and I encashed on my understanding of their often weird behaviour plus there is a lizard outside my door whom I often order to stay out so I talk to her and she always obeys, she perhaps was behind the protagonist having a pet bearded lizard. 

 3. How different is a thriller for you compared to the other books you penned so far?

Poles Apart is the phrase, so far I used to pen very heart-touching and soul-stirring, straight-from-the-heart tales where you will fall in love with the protagonist and relate with her as being like you in some part of the story for sure. I love to weave characters which makes my readers laugh and cry at the same time and become a part of them. They are all inspired by true stories of Indian women like you and me and the more I write the less it is on this subject. Your audience will love to know that I began blogging to be the ‘Voice of Indian Women’ which has been suppressed from eternity and my first ever blog ages ago was called ‘Straight From the Heart’. Women Empowerment is what always stays high on my mind because it is the need of the hour in our motherland and by God’s grace things have started changing for the good.

 4. What makes a good thriller as per you?

A good thriller keeps you at the edge of your seat every single moment with its unexpected twists and turns. It gives you an immersive experience where at the end of the story you are left gasping as to whether what you just read, can be genuinely true. I also prefer leaving it at a major cliffhanger more often than not for precisely two significant reasons, one, I leave my reader wanting for more and have his version of what would have happened to appease his heart and second I may want to pen the sequel of the tale someday and a cliffhanger leaves me room to tweak my plot. A good thriller in my eyes is not predictable and as authors, we weave elements in there consciously to make it unique as much as we can.

 5. What are your other passions in life?

I love grooming six to sixty-year-olds in communication skills. It was the best decade of my life when I ran my academy in Pune and was able to contribute to the lives and goals of so many. It gave me a sense of purpose and friends for a lifetime. I also run Endometriosis Awareness and Support Group India because it took me twelve years to get diagnosed with what has caused my excruciating pain for so long and has crippled my life. The more I researched the more I realized there is no patient support group in India that can help the ones struggling and hence it was an impromptu decision to be their ray of hope and start this helpline. By far it has turned out to be really fulfilling. So you can say I am very passionate about helping anyone in need.

 6. What tips do you wish to give to budding authors?

There are two approaches authors follow first, what my audience wants, I will write that, and second, what my heart wants I will pen it and carve my niche in my readers’ hearts with it. The second one is difficult but writing straight from the heart is what u believe in. I am old school that way and advise young authors to follow their heart too.

 7. How writing came in your life when you realized for the first time that you could write and that to stories?

Writing came into my life when I was barely 4 or 5 years old and my parents had to leave me in my maternal grandparents home for education. I used to cry a lot missing my mom when my maternal aunt taught me how to write beautiful letters to my mamma so that she would come back soon. From there grew my love for words and in my teens I loved expressing my heart through poetic compositions. I also was passionate about writing strong meaningful stories. Even then, when I created fiction, it was inspired by real life, so my creations to date sit at the cusp of fiction and nonfiction. Writing for various magazines taught me the technical know-how of professional writing. So, it has been a gradual process and to me, writing is like breathing, I can’t live without it.

 8. Who are your favorite authors?

I am a Paulo Coelho fan. I am always smitten by the way he weaves magical worlds and parallel paradigms. I love how his characters are skewed and often quite intelligent and ahead of time. I also love reading a lot of autobiographical accounts since I was really small. I find them very inspiring and find life lessons in the little nuances the legends share. I am also a Kahlil Gibran and Joseph Murphy fan. Khaled Hosseini is another author whose work I love.

 9. Who is your best critique when it comes to writing?

My husband and my son. Earlier I thought my husband didn’t read my work and never really asked him to analyze my writings but lately I see that he even reads my blog articles and talks to me about them. He is a very neutral person and he always adds a fresh perspective to my work. He was the first one who asked to rewrite the ending of The Secrets of Nandini Rutuja and the ending of the story is what is being talked about the most. 

My son is my rock. Being a published author of two books himself he understands the nuances well. I often discuss and re-discuss my plot with him several times and take his opinion very seriously.

Also, I have many friends from different walks of life who always agree to be my beta readers and are ready to thrash me if needed and I feel relaxed if they give me a go-ahead. The problem is I get too attached to my words and hence critics matter the most to me and I value their opinion.

 10. How do you rate yourself as a writer?

Honestly speaking, I believe in meaningfully evolving and getting better day on day. I have now made a conscious choice of staying away from comparisons, ratings and awards and enjoy the beautiful creative art of writing to appease my heart and the hearts of my readers. As long as they will find my words worthwhile I will keep writing. Their love, comments and feedbacks are what keeps me going along with an innate urge to keep getting better at whatever I do.

It was this urge that made me bring out Nandini Rutuja to you and it is this urge to try my hands at new things without the fear of failure that keep me motivated always.