Thursday, 12 June 2014

Face to Face With Aryani Banerjee

From a student to a journalist, a journalist to an author, Aryani Banerjee has just published her first book. After finishing her schooling from St. Paul’s, Aryani studied political science and Journalism- film studies from the St. Xavier’s Calcutta. Then she did her masters from Times School Of Journalism, New Delhi. After a long journey Aryani pens down her first book and she shares some of her memories with us.

Face to Face With Aryani Banerjee

  • How does it feel to have your first book published?

  • I still remember its release at the International Kolkata Book Fair on the 8th of February, Friday. Having my first book published was like million butterflies fluttering inside my belly. The release had many people who know me and many strangers who crowded around, it had cameras flashing and I was flanked by Anjan Datta and veteran journalist and writer Ranjan Bandopadhyay. That moment was something like a dream-come-true. The feedbacks and reviews are pouring in, and people are congratulating wherever I’m going, and on my social network it’s my book people keep asking about.

  • Share with us some memories while penning down “Little Longer than Forever”.

  • On a very rainy day back in 2010 when I was switching from one job to another in Mumbai, I had begun scribbling down this story in a spiral notebook. Soon, I got busy with work and forgot about it altogether. A year later I shifted back to Delhi, I noticed it was carelessly saved in a word file in my laptop. But I didn’t continue the story then. One night in November 2012, I found the old spiral notebook inside a cardboard box and read it. Since then I started rewriting again, and whatever I wrote before seemed all nonsense. I tore up the pages and started writing a whole new story. I formed the characters in my mind and gave them life. Sometimes I used to stand in front of the mirror and act like the characters of my novel. Writing has always been creativity’s addictive indulgence. Night after night I had imaginary conversations with my book’s characters because I wanted to get myself into the skin of the story. Within few months, they seemed real to me, and as if they always existed inside my room when I wrote about them.

  • What kind of feedback are you getting after publishing your first book?

  • The feedback has been good. People have shown enthusiasm in buying the book. Currently the distribution is going on, and it’s taking little time to be available in bookstores. Still I got to know people from Andhra and Maharashtra have bought it online and got it delivered to their doorsteps, and they read and gave their feedbacks. One of my readers carried the book on a trip to Singapore, finished reading it in the hotel room, and read it thrice! Honestly speaking, I’m overwhelmed.

  • What can your readers expect in your second novel?

  • Well, it’s too early to say anything about it. I have a plot in my mind, but I may take another year to write it as it needs some research. But it might be that my second book turns out to be an anthology of short stories.

  • As a child who was your favourite author? Now do you idolize someone? Why?

  • I never had a single author as my favourite. I used to be a voracious reader when I was in my school. I remember I used to be scolded by people at home because I read stories books while eating meals. I used to read fiction more than any other genre. I have never idolized anyone in particular because I knew if I did so, I might start imitating unconsciously. I wanted to have my unique style of writing, so I always kept changing favourite authors in my mind.

  • How much of your personal experiences influence the plot of your story?

  • I’m the kind of writer who draws a strong inspiration from real life characters. I like crying and smiling while writing my plot. Many things of my plot have been written remembering real life instances. Just that they were modified while I was writing.

  • As a young Indian author, what are your views about the writings of Chetan Bhagat, Durjoy Datta and Ravinder Singh?

  • Each of the three authors is extremely successful. Especially Bhagat’s books have been made into Bollywood movies, and though I haven’t yet read his book ‘Two states’ yet, but I saw the movie. I loved ‘Three Mistakes of My Life’ and ‘Five Point Someone’. I disliked ‘One Night at the Call Centre’ and ‘What Young India Wants’ was an ordinary read. I like the wit Durjoy Datta adds in the names of his books. And about Ravinder Singh, I feel he writes quite well and connects with the readers.

  • Who has been your constant inspiration?

  • I think it’s none other than my mom. She is a journalist, and since childhood I have seen her penning down scripts and stories till late night hours and she always encouraged me to write. My mom always told me that I had an inclination towards writing that any other thing, and encouraged me to participate in many competitions. Then when I went to Times School of Journalism in New Delhi, it was my professor Mr. Oswald Pereira who inspired me strongly.

  • The reading habit among the teenagers is almost lost. What is your message to them?

  • This is absolutely right. Nowadays teenagers are busy fidgeting with their tabs and serials on television. The habit of reading books that we had in our teenage days is now lost. May be it’s not their fault. Many gadgets have been made easily available to the youngsters now, and the cafĂ© culture is in. So, instead of spending a quiet afternoon reading a book, the teenagers now stroll inside shopping malls and surfing their social networking pages. My message to them is: Do read good books. Nothing on earth will give you the solace of solitude and the freedom of introspection that a book will. Sometimes steal out a while from your schedules, switch off your mobiles and tablets, and sit in one corner with a good book. It will sweep you away into another world. People may leave you, but a book is a friend that can revive your mood anytime you are lonely.

  • Lastly, any message for the readers?

  • Remember, reading is a very good habit and never ever let that erase out. You might sprain your ankle and skip the gym or stop playing a sport with age, but books are immortal pieces of paper that accompany you till your last days.

Note: All updates about the book “Little Longer than Forever” are on its officialFacebook page, and also on open Facebook group Book Talks with Aryani Banerjee.


  1. I deeply regret the mistake.. The change has been made...

    1. It's alright. You are a vibrant young girl and hard working too. Spelling errors happen accidentally. You do not need to apologise.


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