Monday, September 12, 2011

Revisiting history

Chat Author of Chanakya's Chant, Ashwin Sanghi talks about his love for history, intrigue and writing

Indian fiction in English is going through its own coming-of-age moment where new authors are experimenting with different genres and are not scared of promoting their books with the distinct Indianness instead of aping their western counterparts. Moving beyond college romance or chick lit stories, readers are also welcoming the historical and mythological thrillers that authors are dishing out. . Ashwin Sanghi is one such author.

Businessman to author
With a management degree from Yale University and a stable family business Ashwin Sanghi penned his first novel The Rozabel Line, under the pseudonym of Shawn Haigins, which explored the idea that Jesus hadsurvived the crucifixion and eventually settled down and died in India. Explaining the choice behind his pen name, Ashwin Sanghi says, “I was a businessman for 16 years of my life, so when I started writing I wanted to keep my literary identity separate. But later it became a marketing hazard as I did not want my readers to be shocked to see a Marwari when they were expecting a Shawn Haigins.”

After a religious thriller, his second book Chanakya's Chant was a political thriller revolving around the life of the political strategist Chanakya during the rule of emperor Chandragupta Maurya, with a contemporary twist. The book also won the Vodafone Crossword Popular Choice Award 2010. The businessman-turned-author admits that he wanted to look beyond a mundane balance sheet and explore his creative side. After a prod from his wife, he began his literary journey. “Writing helps me create a different world that I can escape to,” he says. But commenting on a full time writing career he quips in, “My worry is, if I don't have a day job my writing will become a part of my mundane boring life. I like to wear the boring hat in the morning and the exciting one in the night when I am writing.”

Full report here Hindu

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