Nandita Chakraborty is a survivor of the Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) that engulfed her when she fell 40 metres during a horrific rock climbing accident. This incident followed Nandita with a train of appalling instances in life that she decided to pour in her trauma into a book, ‘Meera Rising’ a book about love. The writer shares glimpses of her book in an exclusive interview with Indus Age.
By Nidhi Kumari
There’s a tragic story behind the birth of your book ‘Meera Rising’. Do you think writing alleviate pain?
Writing is a therapy for me. I can say that to me writing is a re- birth for me. Emotions, loss, pain and grievance play a huge role, it change our lives. I have learned to embrace these changes in my life and that has been the light for me- which I pour weaving them into stories healing myself.
Also, was inspired by the suffering we all go through when our love gets unacknowledged. But with that suffering comes a greater sense of peace. It is during this time when we are tuned with ourselves than ever before, we listen to everything that goes around us. We fight within ourselves to evolve- to grow. The uniqueness is that with every little disappointment -with every little failure- we grow. To me that is the key to life. Finally, we don’t know why it happens and how it happens but that growth, that fight for thriving life transforms us to spiritual enlightenment and hence Meera Rising is the seed of that growth.
Tell us more about your book and the name ‘Meera Rising
Inspired by the life of Mirabai, our Meera’s been bestowed with not one but with two lovers who fight to win her love:mortal Brian seeks to rescue Meera and takes her back to the temporal world whilst the immortal Krishna invites Meera to his permanent world.
Meera Rising is the unforgettable story of an ordinary woman who dares to become an immortal saint – the extraordinary Mirabai.
What was the biggest challenge when you were writing the book?
The biggest challenge I found was to create the characters around Meera- specially to create the subtle background for Krishna. Not giving away too much of the book but there is a poison scene that actually was mentioned over and over in the true/myth life of Mirabai. I found that extremely challenging to create for this day and age.
Writing requires immense patience and perseverance. Your comments on that.
Writing for me is not only therapy but it’s an asceticism- in Hindi or the right Sanskrit work Sadhana for me. Writing is a lonely process as we are the only one that speaking to our characters, creating them and in a way nurturing them. With my cognition disability, I am extremely careful in taking all that was taught during my therapy sessions. Especially when I am writing a story my senses – my brain is more than active. I am constantly speaking to my characters visualizing- each act revealing as a movie in front of my eyes.
One section of the book you enjoyed writing the most.
I enjoyed writing about the inner thoughts about Meera especially about her friend Lalita. Also, my favorite part was creating the chemistry between Meera and Brian.
Any writer/writers in particular you enjoy reading?
Currently I am in between 2 novels – but with my current head injury I can only read not more than 20 minutes a day. I was reading The Spy by Paulo Coelho – brilliant piece of work. Very engrossing but I was soon drawn to Les Zig Just another Week in Suburbia. A brilliant story about love. So, I am focused on that at the moment.
Your advice to people who’ve been planning to write a book but tend to procrastinate.
Procrastination can only lead to destruction of a good story. There are so many of beautiful untold story yet to be told, read and talked about. Everyone has a story to tell why not you- yes, I am talking to you pick up that pen fill that page even if its meaningless; its unique- it’s you.
A piece of advice to aspiring writers:
Fear not – just write away. Don’t waste time in thinking about how others would react to your work. Also at the same time don’t be too hard on yourself over criticizing your own work- leave that to others but saying that we need to appreciate the good critic with the bad only to improve. I wish everyone good wishes and just write that story that you are wishing to share to the world. It’s your story it’s your uniqueness – all you need to write the first line.