Alisha Rajpal and her debut book, Has Everything Been Done?are taking short stories to the next level. With a variety of genres, this new author’s new book promises to take us on a journey with pit stops so exciting,you’re sure to be enthralled. Here’s Alisha Rajpal talking to us about her book, writing, and where it all started.
Alisha Rajpal – The Dawn of Writing Realization:
Writing is a skill that emerges from the heart. The interest could be sudden or it could be gradual. Alisha Rajpal talks to us about how she discovered that writing was something she wanted to do, even when in school.
“Years ago, when I was an average school kid, I realized that the only part of school I didn’t loathe was reading literature and writing. Everything else was naturally blocked off by my brain – which included homework deadlines. This caused me to skip snack break and write homework just in the nick of time before classes resumed.
This was highly unfortunate because I truly am a snack enthusiast. Now I look back at all those incomplete snack breaks with a heavy heart.”
Alisha Rajpal – Studying the Art of Writing:
Once Alisha Rajpal discovered her strength, she knew that she wanted to further her writing skills. When asked about college and what followed, this is what she had to say:
“After school, I decided to go to a little college and study as much writing as I could. When I graduated college, I ended up taking an entry level job at a company I didn’t like very much. But it was what I could find at that time. That job taught me that I could and should always stay on top of my bills. So that was a positive takeaway from the experience.
For the past two years, I have been working as a writer. I have been working on articles for digital magazines, copywriting for an advertising agency and pretty much whatever else comes my freelancing way.”
‘Has Everything Been Done?’ – The Idea:
“The idea for this book always lived in my mind. But I only put fingers to keyboard about two years ago. This petite collection of short stories takes place between Bombay and New York- two cities I have lived in and known. The book offers a variety of genres and protagonists of all age groups.”
Short Stories and Apprehension:
The market for short stories has always been a tricky one to gauge. Many a publisher specifically mentions that they are not open to short stories. And that was what Alisha Rajpal faced, too.
“Getting this book (Has Everything Been Done?) to market has been an uphill battle. At the beginning, I spoke with literary agents and editors, all of whom seemed apprehensive of the short story format. My counterargument to them has been – and this I strongly believe holds true – that we all have compromised attention spans in this day and age due to technological distractions.
This has been the biggest reason I was drawn to the format of short stories. I wanted my stories to be individual ecosystems that move from highlight to highlight, and also act as positive reinforcement to keep the reader going.
I’d rather have a reader go through three complete stories rather than abandon my book halfway for the new season of Game of Thrones.”
Has Everything Been Done? – The Diversity:
While writing a full-length novel, one always has to keep the genre constant. A book cannot start off as a thriller and end up being a romantic novel. But with short stories, the opportunities are endless – a sentiment that Alisha Rajpal echoes.
“This way (through the book) I had the opportunity to write as many genres as my heart desired and create a more diverse group of protagonists. All of the stories take place between Bombay and New York (or both). The first story takes place on the eve of the year 2000. And the last story takes place on the eve of the year 3000; and there is a lot of fun to be had in the middle.”
Breaking Through Barriers:
Short stories have always been seen with an apprehension that can’t perhaps be explained. They are seen as a genre that has a very narrow scope for success.
“A lot of people said that the format of short stories would be my undoing, but ultimately this format has given me immense creative freedom and opportunity. Which is why this book is for anyone that is still reading in 2018, and also for anyone that isn’t reading in 2018.”
The Journey So Far and the Journey Ahead:
“I am so grateful for my education, my urban privileges and my support systems. And I know this is more than most people get. I am also so grateful to the books I’ve read and the experiences that have ensured that I never stop writing.
There is still a long way for me to go. But I do know that if I keep writing I will get to where I need to be, and that I will be a better person for it.”
“Like any craft, I believe that writing is something most people can do, and with time and continual effort, the writing gets good.”
Author(s): Alisha Rajpal
Publisher: Notion Press
Release: November 2018
Genre: Fiction/Short Stories
Buy this book from Amazon – Please buy this book via affiliate links and show us some love!