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Glimpses of city life

NIKHIL VARMA
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INTERVIEW Author Ahmed Faiyaz talks about his latest book, The Graveyard Shift

focus on societyAhmed FaiyazPhoto: Bhagya Prakash K.
focus on societyAhmed FaiyazPhoto: Bhagya Prakash K.

Ahmed Faiyaz has essayed the roles of a management strategist, a civil servant in Dubai and a voracious reader. He has also written many ‘light’ books and is currently busy promoting his latest — The Graveyard Shift . Faiyaz says, “This book, published by Westland, is a novella and is currently being made into a film. The idea about such a book came from a short story I was writing about an estranged high society couple in Mumbai. I felt that I had enough material to build a story. I added more plots, peopled it with more characters and the book was born. It is the story of a group of connected individuals, whose life changes in the course of one night. It took me a month to finish the book.”

He adds, “This is not an attempt to capture the entire lives of these characters, but to showcase only the events of one specific night, which impacts all these people.”

Writing books happened by chance, says Faiyaz. “I always felt that I had a story which needed to be told. It was not an easy task and needed a great deal of dedication, patience and sacrifice. It is important to read books as it ensures that you can learn from the works of other writers in terms of how characters are developed, the flow of the narrative, dialogues etc. It is important to develop your own style.”

As for his own literary influences, Faiyaz contends, “I have enjoyed reading Murakami, Charles Dickens, Roald Dahl and many others. As far as Indian fiction writing in English is concerned, I enjoy the works of youngsters like Amish Tripathi, Karan Bajaj etc.”

He adds, “I think to say that Indian writing in English received a fillip post the success of Chetan Bhagat is not true. People were reading authors like Amitav Ghosh and Upamanyu Chatterjee much before Bhagat came into the picture.”

NIKHIL VARMA

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