People continue to fall in love with the same intent, says novelist Durjoy Datta
Lovers die, their stories do not. Think Romeo and Juliet, Anthony and Cleopatra, Lancelot and Guinevere, Orpheus and Eurydice, Layla and Majnu, Shah Jahan and Mumtaz Mahal, Paro and Devdas.
Writer Durjoy Datta, believes that it is the essential inviolability of love that continues to draw people to stories about it. “Love is still an important aspect of human existence and people continue to fall in love with the same intent,” he says, adding however that, “When I started writing, I thought I was writing college stories about young people in a campus setting. Most people liked the love stories in the book and it started getting tagged as love stories. I have no problem with whatever tag people give me, as long as they are buying my books and reading them,” says the writer who is here in the city to promote his latest book, Hold My Hand (Penguin, Rs. 140) at Landmark Bookstore.
A graduate from the Delhi College of Engineering and the Management Development Institute, Durjoy worked in the corporate world for a few months before quitting and pursuing writing full time. He has also started a publishing house, Grapevine India Publishers in June 2011 and has won several awards for his achievements.
In a day’s work
The twenty something is remarkably blasé about it however and shrugging his shoulder remarks, “I don’t think my best writing has happened yet - that will happen after 30. You find your space and come up with something you are truly proud of, only then. I’m just experimenting now.”
Rather surprising for an author who has published nine books so far, the first at twenty-one. Almost all his books have become runaway bestsellers yet Durjoy claims that he doesn’t bother too much about the number of books sold and that the only marketing he does is over Facebook.
Writing has always been a big part of Durjoy’s life, “I grew up reading a lot of books. I come from a Bengali household where there is a lot of stress on reading,” he says adding, “I think I’m also a pathological liar. I was an introverted kid and would do nothing all day at school. My mum would ask me what did you do all day and that made me create stories. It started back then.”
This self-confessed geek, who admits to being a 100 kilo, nerdy kid who judged everyone he met by how much they scored has certainly come a long way, “Things changed a lot in college for me. I lost a lot of weight and was suddenly thrust into the cool group.”
His first book he says was largely autobiographical, “The character was me but the story wasn’t mine,” he says. In fact, every character he has created is derived from someone he knows, “Well, I’ve not been writing for very long so it is difficult for me to create a three-dimensional character from scratch. There was a fixed pattern to all my early novels—they had strange quirky titles, were set in college, had similar types of characters, there was lots of sex it and someone or the other dies at the end.”
Yet he claims that he has evolved as both a person and a writer over the years and is now experimenting more with different genres, “My next book is a fantasy,” he says.