We have a great guest today! Annu Subramanian, author of the factu-fiction, Another Heaven, here to talk about her book and how she got it published.
Annu Subramanian is the director of the Writing Center at Brown School, Schenectady, New York. She co-founded Albany Women Connection, a support group in Albany, New York. She was chosen as one of four national finalists by the Norman Mailer Center and National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) in 2011 for her short story, SO FAIR AND VERY LOVELY. She was chosen as Educator of Excellence in 2011 by the New York State English Council.
Her latest book is the factu-fiction, Another Heaven.
Visit her website at www.annusubramanian.com.
About the Book:
Annu Subramanian's new novel, ANOTHER HEAVEN, exposes with unflinching honesty and deep psychological insight the twisted relationship between terrorism and human trafficking. ANOTHER HEAVEN may be difficult to digest in part, but its frankness and refusal to turn away from the unsparing horror of its terrible premise make the book an essential addition to the literature of terrorism and its links to international human trafficking.
Subramanian, a self-described “writer of conscience,” employs her considerable literary skills in the service of shining a bright light on human rights abuses and terrorism. In her previous novel, WAITING FOR THE PERFECT DAWN, Subramanian focused on bringing awareness about the suppression of women and domestic violence.
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Q: Welcome to The Writer's Life! Now that your book has been published, we’d love to find out more about the process. Can we begin by having you take us at the beginning? Where did you come up with the idea to write your book?
Q: How hard was it to write a book like this and do you have any tips that you could pass on which would make the journey easier for other writers?
My greatest challenge was moving forward with the topic of terrorism. It is a sensitive subject and difficult to address. However, as a writer of conscience, I decided to accept the challenges and write about it. Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn has been a great influence in my writing. I believe in his definition of the role of a writer (which he has presented in his Nobel Prize acceptance speech). According to his definition, a writer is a critic of society and government, he is a spokesperson for his country, he seeks the truth and shares them with the world. In addition, he says that world literature is a common body and spirit, a living, heartfelt unity reflecting the growing spiritual unity of mankind. My goal is to be such a writer and to present the kind of literature that would make a lasting impact in my readers’ minds.
Q: Who is your publisher?
Apprentice House (Loyola University) is my publisher. As an educator, I was drawn to this publishing house as it is the only publishing facility that is primarily run by students, with guidance from professors and mentors. Publishing is a powerful media, and I am glad these students have an opportunity to learn it first-hand while they are in an environment that fosters writing and reading.
Q: Is there anything that surprised you about getting your first book published?
Writing is the easier part of creating a book. However, getting a book published is a very difficult task.
Q: What other books (if any) are you working on and when will they be published?
I am working on a collection of short stories. Each story is narrated by the key character of that story, and the narrators come from all parts of the world, who are waiting to talk about different shades of life; love, greed, honor, loyalty, hatred, and much more. My other work is a book of reflections (a narrative non-fiction). Most probably, the book of short stories will be published in 2015.
Q: What’s your favorite place to hang out online?
My Author page on Facebook. I use this page as a platform to post excerpts from Another Heaven, short articles, and reflections to empower marginalized individuals and to promote writing in general.
Q: Finally, what message (if any) are you trying to get across with your book?
I have tried to use Another Heaven as a bold campaign against human trafficking and terrorism. I want my novel to reach my readers as a movement against human rights abuse.
Q: Thank you again for this interview! Do you have any final words?
Thank you for giving me an opportunity to talk about a couple of global issues which are systematically hurting humanity. By writing about these issues and by speaking about them to like-minded audience, I hope to continue my campaign against human trafficking.
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