Today’s I’m sharing with you the excerpts of my author interview with the well-known contemporary romance author Rubina Ramesh. As the leading lady of the online book publicity group The Book Club, she doesn’t need any introduction. She is the sole and heart of the Indian Indie Publishing World. Anyone who happens to be the part of this closely-knitted family knows about her. But do you know that behind the persona of a disciplined and goal-oriented marketing and strategist lies an exceptionally interesting human being.
It was a celebrating moment for me when I got a chance to explore the interests and hobbies of Rubina Ramesh. She’s not only bold and confident in her spoken words but her fierceness can be easily seen in her strong and courageous women characters that she creates with penchant.
She’s an achiever, a dreamer, and a problem solver and my interaction with her wasn’t just concentrated on writing and marketing. It was funny, motivational, and was more like a casual and friendly chit chat. So, here’s the glimpse of her life as an adventurer, a wayward traveler, a family person, and of course as a proud indie author. Rubina Ramesh is an avid reader, writer, blogger, book reviewer and marketer. She is the founder of The Book Club, an online book publicity group. Her first literary work was published in her school magazine. It gave her immense pride to see her own name at the bottom of the article. She was about 8 years old at that time. She then went to complete her MBA and after her marriage to her childhood friend, her travel saga started. From The Netherlands to the British Isles she lived her life like an adventure. After a short stint in Malaysia, she finally settled down in the desert state of USA, Arizona. Living with her DH and two human kids and one doggie kid, Rubina has finally started living the life she had always dreamed about – that of a writer.
Excerpts of the Interview:
Me: Can you please share your self-publishing success story with your fans?
Rubina: Dear Mariyam, Thanks for these wonderful questions. Self-publishing was choice for me. Not a place where I landed up because publishers rejected me. I wanted something where I had the control of my book, my destiny and of course my story. When I entered this line there were already a few established writers but still, the competition was not that high. Of course, writers were there but only a few had tasted success. One thing I understood quickly – this is not a place where you put up your shoddy and unedited work. You have to take care of your book cover, editing and treat your complete manuscript as a complete product. And all these things you can do only if you enjoy the journey. Every aspect of it. Once an author realizes the amount of work this platform demands – you are then only an indie author. Definitely not something that one can pay for to others and forget nor expect others to do for you.
Me: Your dialog writing skills are meticulous, smooth, and flawless, something that doesn’t come to non-native English speakers naturally. Could you share the art of writing dialogues with budding writers out there?
Rubina: Thanks for this huge compliment. I really don’t know what to say to this. The only thing I can say is I don’t translate from Hindi to English in my mind – which many still do in India. Even though I do use a spattering of colloquial language, I don’t vest any humor or emotions on those lines. It’s a word here or there to showcase the roots of a character. I am a writer who writes in English. I have to always respect that in my own writing. Once again, thanks for this compliment.
Me: Why romance. Why not Sci-Fi, Action, Crime, or Thriller. Do you think women especially Indian women fantasize more about having a perfect man, a fairy tale love affair, and a happily ever after?
Rubina: My first book an anthology is a psychological thriller. I am planning a horror and another psychological thriller. But romance is my weakness. What is there not to love about love? 😀 We spread enough hatred and fear in our lives, so if I can inject love into anyone’s life even for a few hours, then why not. And who does not dream of a happily ever after? I write to offer escapism from their pain, yet I try to hold on to one reality in my book. The reality of commitment under any circumstances. I don’t like writing about unnecessary sexual content but if my scene demands it – I am not shy about it. But having said that I truly believe that every man and woman out there either hate love or search for love. So how can I go wrong with writing romance?
Me: As an indie author what marketing skills one should have to gain a foothold in the publishing industry?
Rubina: This is something that I tell every indie author. Your success and your failures are your own. You can’t blame anyone for it. If you feel you are going down, perk up and fight back. You can do a hundred facebook ads, you can hire the best publicist out there, but everything is momentary. You need something or someone who will constantly promote you – and that person is only you. The indie publishing world is pretty close-knit. We are not perfect. We have our moments of jealousy and anger. Of humiliation and jubilation but we never forget our roots – that we are indie authors. This is one place where one should never come because one has no place to go – walk on this path only if you are ready to work hard. This is not a vanity publishing scenario, where you pay money and forget about your own book.
Me: Do you begin writing a book with a particular target group in mind?
Rubina: No, never. That is again a restriction and as an indie author, we are fighting against restrictions. I want to write stories in every genre if possible. (Wishful thinking) There are so many stories to tell, why curtail yourself?
Me: I know it’s the sixth question, but I have so many more 🙂 How do you manage your time with family, writing, and other things?
Rubina: Would you believe if I say I sleep for 3 to 4 hours only? 😀 I am into marketing of books for other authors too and both marketing and writing are my passions. Kids are my passion, My hubby is my passion. So if you see, I am a person driven my passion. 😀 I suppose when you love everything around you, you will always find time for it.
Thanks once again for these wonderful questions Mariyam and I wish you all the very best in your future endeavors. I know there is a book coming along somewhere – I can sense it 😀 haha . all the best.
She signs off…
On seeing her, he grinned. “There goes my dream of my bride sitting on the bed with a long veil over her face that I could slowly lift up.”
Esha laughed. “Do it in your real wedding.”
Rohan felt a jolt at her words though his feelings had stopped making any sense at all. He found her pajama-clad wet avatar very sensual. Her hair was wet from the shower and a few droplets fell on her collarbone, like dew drops on a rose petal. Now that he was finally alone with Esha, he wanted to further muss up her hair and kiss those wet pearls away. But never had he imagined that he would be alone in a room with her amidst roses and that her intoxicating perfume would drive him crazy. Theirs wasn’t a marriage in the true sense and yet her lips were calling out to him to feel them with his own.
But he was sure that she wouldn’t appreciate it. He forced himself to lean back on the pillow and give her an easy smile to fight his raging hormones. “So, which side of the bed is yours?”
She looked at him sharply to check if he was laughing at her predicament. She then went to her purse and took out a tape—a big, brown one.
“Naughty, naughty,” he said sitting up, suddenly feeling the air crackling between them with an invisible electric thread that was slowly pulling them towards each other. “What’s your intention darling?”
Esha gave him an evil grin and sashayed towards him, all the while opening the tape. “You didn’t think I would be prepared?” she asked, her voice husky. Any hot-blooded man would find this a big turn-on but Rohan sat up straight, wondering if she was drunk.
“Esha, I think we should go to sleep now.” He gave her a sheepish smile. “It’s getting very late.”
She threw back her head and laughed, “The night is still young, darling.” She opened the tape further and climbed on the bed, inching slowly towards him as she rolled it out. Rohan could feel his heart skipping a few beats. He wanted her no doubt, but he was not expecting this and her strange behavior made him uncomfortable.
“Do you want something to eat?” He sounded lame even to himself. She threw her head back and looked at him, her sherry colored eyes darkening into molten chocolate, and the light breeze from the window caught her silk tresses and made them dance to a tune of their own. She bit her lower lip and leaned in front of him, staring deep into his eyes. “Are you nervous?”
“Why are you behaving like this?” he asked, trying to get out of the bed. He felt an invisible hand clutching his stomach but he kept his tone breezy. “Are we taking this night to mean what it is meant to be? I’m ready if you are.”
If she took another step forward, her breasts would touch him. What the devil was she playing at? He couldn’t even lean back further since the head rest was stopping any further movement. She leaned forward but instead of coming towards him, she went beyond him and stuck the edge of the tape to the middle of the bed post. She then pulled the tape down – further and further and a line was drawn along the middle of the bed.
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