Former Director of RAW K.C. Verma on his collection of short stories

One day at a cocktail party, somebody asked K.C. Verma “what are you doing?” On replying “nothing”, Verma, a former Director of RAW, was enlightened by the gentleman never to say “nothing”, and to instead say “I am writing a book”. Well, he has finally written one – a collection of short stories titled “Stories I wouldn’t tell my mother”. The author replied to questions in an interview

What kind of writing were you doing before the book? What inspired you to write these short stories ?

My love for writing was always there, in school also most magazines were edited by me. Later, my professional days were very busy, but still I would manage to get a few things published. To be precise there are a few things which inspired me to write. Firstly, my ever growing romance with English language and its nuances. I may not be perfect at it, I may be bad at it but nothing prevents me from loving this language. I love to indulge in it whether in verbal or written form. And secondly, now when I have time to sit back and relax I think writing is the best form to keep myself occupied .

What led you to think of this title?

In my college days I read a book which was collection of horror stories edited by Alfred Hitchcock and its title was “Stories which my mother never told me” . Secondly, stories in my book have an element of indecency – yes I am quiet unapologetic about using this word.

Most characters in your book have shades of materialism, greed and unfaithfulness? Is your verdict that humans really have an ugly nature?

No. Definitely not. Perhaps I would say the contrary. You won’t meet a person more positive about lifeI would disagree that all my characters are shady. It’s all about how they are pushed into a situation by the environment and they decide to react to it. My book characters are complex, some of them even uni-dimensional. I offer no defence for any of my characters, you have to take them as they are. It took a lot of thought to craft words used by characters. If something is quite upfront in a situation, if there is no twist and no question mark hanging then it will be a boring read.

With your work experience do you have any plans to write your autobiography?

Very unlikely. Thirty years in IB, couple of years in Narcotics Deparment, Chief of RAW and range of subjects I dealt with in my professional life come under the Secret Official Act and it will not allow me to reveal much and if I leave that out I am afraid remaining won’t be that exciting . Anyways, it doesn’t matter where we work, one must be loyal to his/her profession and take secrets to grave. This must be a protocol for everyone.