ABOUT THE POET:
Vihang A Naik was born on September 2, 1969, at Surat, in Gujarat into a Gujarati family in Surat. From Surat, he moved to Baroda, Ahmedabad and other cities out of Gujarat. His travels gave him unique insight into life and humanity for his creative writing. Navrachana was his primary school then he changed cities and schools. He did his matriculation from a local school in Vadodara, obtained bachelor's degree in Arts (English Literature and Philosophy) and master's degree (English Literature and Indian Literature in English Translation) from Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda. He has translated his own Gujarati Poetry "Jeevangeet" into English. His poetry is included in various anthologies, literary journals and magazines such as Anthology of Contemporary Indian Poetry, The Dance of the Peacock, The Journal of Literature and Aesthetics, Indian Literature , The Brown Critique, Kavya Bharati, The Indian P.E.N., The Journal of Indian Writing In English, Coldnoon: Travel Poetics, Verbal Art etc.
Q. Characterize yourself in one word?
Q. Please describe what the story/book is about in one sentence.
It is difficult to describe my poetry collection City Times and Other Poems in one sentence or else I wouldn’t have written a book but since you insist it is about way of life in a city which involves growing up with love and human condition aspiring ultimate end of life – philosophy or salvation.
Q. Briefly, what led up to this book? What were you writing (and getting published, if applicable) before breaking out with this book?
Well, I used to scribble verses during the later part of my schooling. Of course, after school, I then entered the portals of The Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda. By this time I burnt one collection of poetry written in English during my early period of writing. I don’t know, but this personal event of my burning my collection was published in the local newspaper when at twenty-four my published book of poetry City Times and Other Poems was on stand in 1993.
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?
I did not certainly sit on the table to write as mostly we gather about authors. But certainly, whenever it flashed I wrote it down on a piece of paper or anything I had my hand on even waste paper. Thank I usually work on it. At times rework like a sculptor. Chisel it until it turned out to be a creative work.
Q. Looking back, what did you do right that helped you break in?
I just had to put it down on paper.
Q. Did you have a platform in place? On this topic, what are you doing to build a platform and gain readership?
I read out to my friends. Then at gatherings. I created some kind of poetry readings at The Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda at now V. Y. Kantak Lecture Hall located at the department of English and other venues. Of course, social media arrived very late.
Q. Favorite novel?
Q. Something personal about you people may be surprised to know?
That I am human.
Q. What’s next?
Q. Future of SALISMANIA.com through your eyes?
SALISMANIA.com has miles to go. You are the need of an hour. In India, we have very few relatively quality review magazines that are exclusively online. You must continue to work and archive all your literary judgments which can propagate better literature.