Author Yashodhara Lal rues that there is a dearth of books in the genre of humour
Books are being written by the dozens. And there are many more writers than ever before. But Yashodhara Lal, author of Just Married, Please Excuse and Sorting Out Sid, says there is a dearth of humour writing in general. “My books can be tagged under humour. I believe humour should be a valid genre,” says the Delhi-based author.
Speaking of genres, Yashodhara says that at times, categorising books into particular labels can be disadvantageous. “When you dismiss a genre of writing, you dismiss a whole lot of talented writers. It would be nice to explore every genre rather than go by the herd mentality.”
Yashodhara’s first book Just Married, Please Excuse is largely autobiographical. “I have a blog, in which the funniest stories were about my husband. I took the first three years of my marriage and wrote a book out of it. The book required a lot of support from my husband and my mother, whom I make a lot of fun of in the book. Both of them have a sense of humour.” Sorting Out Sid though is quite a departure from Just Married… It is about Siddharth Agarwal, also known as Sid, who is 36-years-old and is about to get divorced. “Even though the story in Sorting Out Sid has a male protagonist, the book is meant for both men and women. I enjoyed writing about Sid. He’s a Peter-Pan sort of character, and a master of denial, who refuses to acknowledge the mess in his life.”
The subtext in Sorting Out Sid is about mid-life crisis. “I am in my 30s and I actually see mid-life crisis at this age. There’s a lot of re-valuation of our lives, from work to relationships, and this churn is happening a lot in people in their 30s. At this age, people aren’t frivolous, yet they have not understood where they want to be.” What Yashodhara does best is to convert real life experiences into humourous, insightful stories. “Somewhere during the writing process, the characters and plot take on a life of their own. If you allow it to flow, that has got to be the best part of writing a book.” Yashodhara, a graduate of Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore, has over a decade’s experience in marketing.
Yashodhara is currently at a crossroads of writing a draft of the sequel of Just Married, Please Excuse and another book she is working on. Considering the burgeoning number of books, Yashodhara says it helps if people actively recommend good books to be read, that way new writers can be discovered.