ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
M Kaarthika Santosh is an engineer by education, cost manager by profession and a writer by passion. She hails from Chennai and is currently working in Delhi. She describes herself as a perseverant and an ambitious person. Her flair for words and her zeal for storytelling made her debut in the writing arena through this novel. She admin a page called 'The Rough note' on Facebook where she posts her short stories. Apart from creative writing, she likes solving puzzles and traveling around the world.
Q. Characterize yourself in one word?
Q. Please describe what the story/book is about in one sentence.
Tagged is a modern-time love story which happens between two people who are quite opposite in character and the catch is they have never met. How the hero, Sai Prabhu approaches and to woo his lady love, Preethi is presented in a gripping narration filled with twists and turns.
Q. Briefly, what led up to this book? What were you writing (and getting published, if applicable) before breaking out with this book?
Basically, I love stories, be it, I am the one who is telling it or the one who is listening to or reading it. So, reading, writing, and storytelling had always been my hobby and interest since my childhood days. I always used to write stories and skits for my school and college cultural programs. What started as a mere hobby grew into a passion by the encouragement of my families and friends who constantly kept on telling how good my stories are and that I have got everything to become a good writer. My burning desire to bring out all my imaginations and creativity inspired me to write and publish a novel.
Q. What was the time frame for writing this book? Tell us an interesting detail or two, if applicable. For example, did you finish the first draft after one week?
The journey of writing the book itself was quite an interesting one. Initially, I started posting my book as episodes on my page, “The Roughnote” on Facebook. At that time I had not even decided the overall plot of the story. Only as I started posting each episode every week I started to think more about the plot and thus the story evolved. It was solely because of my readers of “The Roughnote” who constantly motivated and supported me, I could finish the series. Their comments, criticism, and feedback helped me to shape my story better. Only with their constant motivation and demand to read the entire series, I had completed the whole story. If they had not supported me this story might have been stopped mid-way. Once I had completed the series, I was thrilled and excited to see how with the support of my readers I had completed writing a 55,000 words story in about half year!
Q. Looking back, what did you do right that helped you break in?
I think that my decision to start posting my story as a series of episodes every week on my Facebook page even before I finished writing the whole script turned out positive for me and helped me to complete my novel. Maybe if I had not got the motivation from my readers on Facebook, I would have never published this book, or maybe I would have not even finished penning it down. So my advice to every budding writer out there is, write your story and keep on showing it to your friends and others for their opinions and feedback. They can be a great source of inspiration and motivation that would help you in shaping your story better.
Q. Did you have a platform in place? On this topic, what are you doing to build a platform and gain readership?
Yes. As I said I frequently post short stories, flash fiction, and series of stories on my Facebook page, “The Rough Note” which has a readership of about 775 people, amongst which only about 150 are my friends and rest all are unknown to me, who had joined the page just because they enjoyed what I posted there. That was my platform to post and get honest feedback and reviews of my creative writing.
I keep on posting my stories there and thus try to gain more readerships. Currently, my second series, “Love is in the air”, is posted there every week and the response is even better than my first series and of course, I am gaining more and more readers.
Q. Favorite novel?
I love detective novels. And my all time favorite is “The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes” by Arthur Conan Doyle.
Q. Something personal about you people may be surprised to know?
My biggest aim in life is to script and direct a film. I hope I achieve that!
Q. What’s next?
My second series, “Love is in the air” has already crossed about 10 episodes and that is my current work in progress. However, for my second book I wish to plunge into a different genre and so I would be writing a historical thriller. I have already frozen the storyline. Currently, I am brushing up my history lessons a bit so that I can start my work soon.
Q. Future of SALISMANIA.com through your eyes?
First of all, congratulations to SALISMANIA.com and its team. I must definitely say that you guys are doing a great work. Starting from your honest reviews to your unbiased book rankings on your blogs, I am a real admirer of your good work. In fact, I have never seen such an organized and professional book reviewers. Kudos to you for that.
And I am very sure that you guys will take it further and maintain your professionalism and honesty in providing reviews and ratings, in the future as well. I wish to see you grow more and more. All the best.