No Illusions in Xanadu
Passion of Crime in Xanadu
“It’s the idea of creating something out of nothing that prompts me to write.” Ruby Gupta.
The 2nd day of VoW started off as exciting and pompous as the 1st day. At Greenpanel Hall, the discussion revolving around Ruby Gupta’s recently released “No Illusions in Xanadu” with Ganesh Saili set a good tone for the entire day. The book was recommended to the audience and praised for its good writing skills and clear logical progression. The conversation started with Ganesh asking Ruby on her motivations as to why she writes, what triggers the whole process. She went back to how she’s loved reading stories since childhood and how she’s loved the element of mystery in our lives. Using this mystery, she believes creating something out of nothing is a very rewarding experience.
What started off as something generic, something quite formal touched a humorous point when she was interrogated as to why she did not entertain the readers at all with some humour or juicy/steamy scenes in the book. She vehemently defended herself by saying that one need not bring in humour into a crime thriller for the obvious reason that laughing about murder isn’t something funny. Plus, on a playful note, she added that she is teaching currently at the Indian Military academy and hence, doesn’t want her students to talk about how steamy the scenes in her book were. She playfully retorted, “Ganesh is obsessed that I should make it ‘juicy’”. A big chunk of the discussion was frustratingly fixated on Ganesh giving her advice as to how and why she needs to add some more steamy scenes to make the book catchier.
“The book doesn’t write itself, I have to labour and labour and labour.” When asked as to the trivial details of how she prefers writing she mentioned, interestingly so, that she isn’t the type of author who starts from the first chapter and instead prefers to let the book write itself. One of the idiosyncrasies of her writing process is that She likes starting from anywhere, maybe even from the end and admits to getting tons of satisfaction from writing “THE END” at the end.
Further along the discussion, she elaborated on the influence Agatha Christie has had on her works and honestly announced that her plot is pretty much the basic Agatha Christie plot. Plus even without being asked, she revealed that her Google searches are filled with murder-related questions and one glance at her Google history might make someone believe that she has anti-social tendencies.
During the Q&A session, Ruby was asked as to how as a professor, she has the obligation of informing her students of the realities of life which include steamy stuff as well. To which, she replied that her obligation about educating is not confined to that, she can do an equally good job at teaching them about human relationships and how unchecked excess of emotion leads to crimes and murder.
Overall, the discussion was marvellous and enlightening. It did an extremely good job in engaging the audience and informed the audience about the perks and idiosyncrasies of each writer’s writing process. It cleared many obscurities that shroud the whole premise of writing. Plus, this discussion would be a haven for crime-thriller enthusiasts but fortunately, also has a lot to offer for others as well.
By Schulu Duo, St.Stephens