Today I bring you Rubina Ramesh, proud and popular indie author of two books, one an eclectic collection of short stories while the other is a beautiful and touching romance novel, as diverse as they come. I have known Rubina since 2013 and I am also proud of the fact that she inaugurated her THE BOOK CLUB with the blog tour of my first published novella. There's more to Rubina than a writer. She's an ace reviewer and marketeer, though my first association with the lady was when I came across her short stories during a contest and was totally impressed. I am mighty chuffed about the fact that I had a hand in pushing Rubina to publishing her work. Yeah, writing she has been doing for many years, while publishing is a different ballgame altogether. And I am truly thrilled that my friend has chosen the indie path - a mite difficult maybe, but totally self satisfying, I must say. I am sure she agrees with me.
So, here you go...
Sundari Venkatraman: Rubina Ramesh, the marketer VS Rubina Ramesh, the author - how tough is it to wear two entirely different hats? Do you find it easy or difficult to promote your own work?
Rubina Ramesh: Hi Sundari, Thanks for these lovely questions. You really know how to ask the tough ones
Sundari Venkatraman: Glad to hear that
Rubina Ramesh: I am an author by choice and a marketer by chance. You know we started this journey together. During those days, some 4 years back, the idea of gathering reviews was not so much in vogue in the Indian scenario. Though we had some terrific reviewers gathering the book lovers together, the word “cross-promotions” was looked down upon.
It might be I was living in the USA and I can stay up late, which made it possible for me to reach out the readers in their prime time. Now prime time in every zone varies. And this became my field to play with. I fell in love with cross promotions and I met some authors who trusted me enough with their books. They did not even ask me as to why I needed the free copies. I have been blessed that way.
Sundari Venkatraman: Oh yes! I remember only too well how we started off together. It's been a wonderful and self-satisfying journey indeed. Cheers! Now for my next question: You had an opportunity to go trad publish. Why did you change your mind? Are you happy with your decision?
Rubina Ramesh: Not once but four times. My first two books were trad published and I had the blessing of the Man above to be published on the same pages as Gulzar Sir. Thanks to Fablery Publications for arranging that. But then, one of the big publishers along with a few upcoming ones accepted my book Finding the Angel and my upcoming Maya. (Yes, I had written Maya many years ago) But the changes they asked me to make, I just could not.
The world is changing nowadays Sundari. I am trying to be true to my art. My story. My effort and my mistakes. I leave it to the readers to decide whether they like me or not. It cannot be the likes and dislikes of one human being. Period. So like I live my life, I relive my stories. On my own terms.
Sundari Venkatraman: I know exactly what you mean. I found this quote under Mind Chow in today's Mumbai Mirror, "If you're creating anything at all, it's really dangerous to care what people think" and was thinking how apt it is for us indie authors and your reply just confirms that thought. So when are we going to read your next book? What genre is this one going to be?
Rubina Ramesh: Maya. I just cannot let go of it yet. It’s a drama or a psychological thriller, as you want to call it. I like experimenting with genres. I am writing a fantasy also. One day maybe an erotica. I won’t suggest this to new authors at all. Very risky since the chance of losing your audience is more. But the readers are more intelligent now and they like exploring things too. They like coming out of their comfort zone. I have had serious readers coming up and saying they like Finding the Angel and romance readers falling in love with Knitted Tales. I have had a few who rejected the other one based on their likes of my one book. Fair enough. I am not out to please all but to satiate those 3 hours that a reader spends on a book. Only those three hours where they forget their likes and dislikes. I dream of stories and write them. And my dreams are varied.
|Knitted Tales in Paperback|
Rubina Ramesh: Where is it written that a writer has to be curbed within the boundaries of a genre? I read everything I can lay my hands on. Every genre. Every kind of author. To me, it does not matter, if he or she is an indie author provided the story is well edited. So if I can read any genre, I think I want to write in a few diverse genres as well
Sundari Venkatraman: You have a very valid point there. And I know from my experience with Knitted Tales that you can write in diverse genres. Keep writing is all I can say. Do we get to see your books in paperback anytime soon?
Rubina Ramesh: Oh yes! My Knitted Tales has come out as Paperback now and soon all others will follow. Amazon has been great to authors like us. Eccentric and those who don’t follow the rules. You will know that feeling, right Sundari?
Sundari Venkatraman: I can's but agree with your point about Amazon. With this we come to the end of an awesome interview. Looking forward to reading more and more of your work, Rubina Ramesh. I wish you the very best in your journey as a writer, an entrepreneur and reviewer. Kudos!
Click here to buy the author's books: Author.to/Rubina