Mirage: “Invent the whole reality based on experience”

Mirage by Nilakshi Garg

Interviewer- “First of all, I was quite attracted by your debut novel’s name ‘Mirage.’ I like and appreciate the choice of the title/name of the book”.

Ms. Nilakshi Garg- “Thank you very much.”

Interviewer- “So, based on your experience and your book, I have prepared some of the questions, so shall we begin?”

Ms. Nilakshi Garg- “Yes, sure”.

Interviewer- “Are you ready”?

Ms. Nilakshi Garg- “Yes, Yes! Definitely”?

Which part was the most difficult to write for Nilakshi?

Interviewer- “Here is my first question: According to you, which part was the most difficult to write? Or was it hard to elaborate”?

Ms. Nilakshi Garg- “In that case, I have two scenes: the first has to be the past of the main character. Writing down Bethany’s past was a bit difficult for me because I never wanted my readers to feel tired because of it being a cliché story. So I had to spend a few hours thinking and then writing what happened to the character. After all, the reason had to be strong to know how the character changed drastically over the years. The second scene will be the very starting of the book/story itself.

I already wrote the starting of the book, but it is not what my readers read now. It is the better version. I deleted the first draft of the starting, and I rewrote at least the first two chapters”.

What is Nilakshi’s writing kryptonite?

Interviewer- “Woah, amazing. So moving on, what is your writing kryptonite? Like something you hate, maybe during the writing process or in another author’s novel”.

Ms. Nilakshi Garg- “I think it has to be the grammatical errors. Otherwise, I find something that I cannot understand; I simply google it. I like knowing new things. But if there is any kind of grammatical error and that too in a novel, it irks me a bit. So if there is any such error, you must rectify it. It annoys many seasoned readers if that error is easily identified.

Interviewer- “Right, it is just not expected from any novel or the author itself.”

Ms. Nilakshi Garg- “Exactly.”

How was Nilakshi’s lifestyle schedule hampered?

Interviewer- “Writing a book or a novel is a great thing. It consumes a lot of time. So, how was your lifestyle schedule hampered? How did you manage the right balance between your work and personal life while writing?”

Ms. Nilakshi Garg- “Yes, that’s a good question. Apart from being an author, I am a professional writer and a blogger. So that means both my personal and professional life contains writing. Either I am writing blogs or website content, so it is one thing or the other. I am pretty much surrounded by the writing stuff only. Moreover, I have been working from home for many years. Therefore, I have established myself well. So, I somehow manage my personal life by spending some time with my family, my siblings, and equally balance it out with my profession”.

How did Nilakshi’s family react for becoming an author?

Interviewer- “As you mentioned, your family and personal life, how did your family react to you being an author?  Were they fine with your writing career since we live in the Indian society”.

Ms. Nilakshi Garg- “Actually they are very supportive. Every family member is very proud of me. They are rather happy with me being the ‘first author’ in the family, and they love to brag about it”.

Nilakshi would date a guy like Gerald!

Interviewer- “That’s good. Would you and your main lead character get along?”

Ms. Nilakshi Garg- “To me, it will be ‘Gerald.’ I would get along with him. He is very sweet and straightforward. Initially, Bethany and I won’t mingle because she is very uptight, but eventually, at the end of the novel, she tones down her personality. She blends her personality with Gerald because she falls for him. So, yes, in the end, we all will get along pretty well and have a great Christmas party sometime”.

How Nilakshi created the main characters?

Interviewer- “Sure! What is the most challenging or terrific part of writing about the character from the opposite sex? Since you are a female, you can make a whole character development for a female character, what about the male characters”?

Ms. Nilakshi Garg- “For a male perspective, you have to at least get that copy/part read by a male or guy friend of yours. They help you check whether the male’s POV part is getting ‘all-girly’ or not. There might be only a bit of difference between the vocabulary used by different genders. But, yes, the borderline personalities can be the same, if the script or narrative demands. 

If you see and observe the works of modern authors, there is nothing ‘girly.’ It’s more about you connecting with the male audience and reader appropriately”.

Interviewer- “So real experience is what that matters.”

Ms. Nilakshi Garg- “Yes, we invent the whole reality based on experience.”

What Nilakshi expect from her readers?

Interviewer- “What are your expectations from your readers? How would you describe your ideal reader”?

Ms. Nilakshi Garg- “The ideal reader would be someone who gives his/her time to read any book, not just mine. They must be passionate about reading the book and not just skimming through the pages. If a reader is giving his/her time to read a book, it’s very much appreciated. Any author would want that. What I expect from my readers is that they just enjoy the novel. I have written the novel from that viewpoint only. So that it is highly dramatic and entertaining for the readers”.

Interviewer- “So, like you have tried to include every genre for the readers.”

Ms. Nilakshi Garg- “Yes.”

Can we get the Sequel of Mirage in near future?

Interviewer- “Here is my other question for you. If you were to write a spin-off about a side character, who would you pick and why”? 

Ms. Nilakshi Garg- “I would pick Trisha who works for the main lead, Bethany Carlson, at her tattoo parlor. I have left hints in the book/novel itself if you read it. Perhaps, if this novel reaches certain reachability, I will write a spin-off or a sequel that will include another love story surrounding the same characters that may happen in the future. Though I am not sure at present, it will be Trisha for the first spin-off”.

Interviewer- “What do you think will happen to the characters after the book ends”?

Ms. Nilakshi Garg- “Not going to reveal the ending, but the book has a happy ending. The characters would discover their life more with the time and pace of the novel. I will expect them to live a normal life or maybe face the new challenges after the novel ends”.

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Nilakshi’s advice for new writers

Interviewer- “Since you are an experienced writer, what is your advice to new writers”?

Ms. Nilakshi Garg – “Build your tribe. That is something that I didn’t have when I started this novel. When you have loyal readers and writers around you, they help you edit things or rewrite them. And those modifications may help you bring out the best of the story. So, my advice to the upcoming writers would be to find a good tribe”.

Interviewer- “So with this, we come to the end of this interview. Thank you, Ms. Nilakshi Garg, for sharing these insights with us. I feel inspired by you today. Thank you again”.

Ms. Nilakshi Garg- “Woah, that’s great, thank you.”

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