Abhishek Goswami is presently working in Gurgaon and has fifteen years of work experience in reputed MNC firms. Born and brought up in New Delhi, he has done his graduation in Science from Delhi University and then did his PGDBA in HR. Having a keen interest in writing from the start, he has come out with his debut book of poetry “The Lonely Drummer and other poems”. These poems reflect his interest in Science and Nature and the constant interplay these topics have with people. In a candid chat with Chirdeep Malhotra, he discusses about his writing journey, the reader’s response to his first book, his favourite book genres, and why he thinks Indian English poetry has a long way to go.
You are an MNC professional, yet you have authored a book of poetry. Were you inclined towards writing from the start? Can you tell us more about your writing journey?
It was always my dream to become a published author. Right from childhood, I always liked reading books across genres like adventure-thrillers, mysteries, historicals, science fictions, etc. Gradually, I got interested in writing stuff like short stories. Once, I and one of my friends decided to write a novel. We developed the synopsis, the plot and even wrote a few pages. But then, as life is, we were slowly drawn away by our daily life routines, office jobs and family life. So, the novel remained unfinished and my writing process also stopped. All these years, the desire to write something worthwhile and reaching out to the wider world with it remained burning inside, but I did very little to fulfil it. I thought that with the ever increasing responsibilities in life, I would never be able to do it and so did not even try it. I also realized that writing a full-length novel is indeed a very compelling task, in terms of dedication, time, and mental energy involved; and it requires a lot of patience to plan the whole thing out as well. Maybe I lacked the patience and determination to carry out this task. I used to write short poems to popularize a few office fun activities like the cricket tournaments and wrote a few blogs about our offsite trips as well. However, something was still missing and I was not getting fully motivated to write further. But during one of the office events last year, I witnessed some wonderful stuff displayed as exhibits like paintings and photography done by some of our colleagues. It was there that I felt that I should also further my talent and the thing I am good at-writing that is, and felt encouraged and motivated. I made up my mind to capture some of the experiences I had in life in the form of short poems. I made a separate Facebook page dedicated to my poems which got good reviews and I felt confident enough to think and planned to write more stuff.
What has been the reader’s response like to your debut book “The Lonely Drummer and other poems”?
The collection of poems in my book, “The Lonely Drummer and Other Poems” covers various topics like Life, Spirituality, Nature, Humour, Mystery, Science, Lives of famous personalities and even science fiction. The book has 35 poems in it and can be enjoyed by all age groups. The book was displayed the New Delhi World Book Fair and the Chennai Book Fair in January this year. The audience response in both the fairs was simply wonderful. It felt very nice when people showed interest in what I have written and were curious to know more about my book. Most of them wished me well for the future as well. Also, the book is getting a good response online on Amazon, Flipkart, Infibeam and notionpress.com. It was recently displayed in Agra Book Fair where again the audience loved it.
Many poems in your book delve into themes of science and nature and the constant interplay these have with people. What has been your thinking about writing the poems on these lines?
I have a deep interest in Science, scientific inventions and discoveries, and the general history of how science has evolved over the last thousand years. I keep reading about it and about the impact Science has had on our day-to-day life. And of course, we all have learnt about planets, galaxies, experiments in physics and chemical reactions. To bring that flavour and nostalgia of science back into the fold of today’s younger generation, I have written a few poems based on Science and the wonders of nature. I do hope that the readers will be interested in reading something new.
What do you think of the current scenario in the Indian poetry arena? What themes do you think contemporary poets should write more about?
Indian poetry, especially Indian English poetry can be much better than what it is now. English poetry in India has a long way to go and I think contemporary poets should try to write something new and not carry the same old style which is one of the reasons why its appeal is declining. Themes can be contemporary or individualistic, but poets can experiment with different styles of poetry. Experiments can be done at both the “form” level as well as in the “content” level. But poetry is still thriving in our vernacular languages where it is getting due recognition and space.
What are your favourite books? Can you share with our esteemed readers about the genres that you like to delve into and your favourite authors?
Well, you will be surprised to know that I read more novels and short stories rather than poetry. Talking about poetry, I like poems of Robert Frost, P.B. Shelley, William Blake and Tagore. I generally read lot of suspense-mysteries, Agatha Christie and Dan Brown being my favourite authors in this genre. I also read mythological fiction and historical novels. Recently I liked “Asura” a lot and am currently reading “Ajaya”, both written by Anand Neelakantan. Of course, short stories by Saki, O Henry and Oscar Wilde are perennial favourites.
What are your other interests apart from writing?
My other interests include reading, listening to classical music, and playing and watching Cricket. I also read up a lot on Indian music/movie history, works of legends and how a particular movie/song/script was created or developed.
Are there any other literary projects in the pipeline?
Well, I have written a few poems in the last few months and would like to continue writing more. One of the new poems, “The Enchanted Forest” was published in the Hans India newspaper in February. As soon as I write a sufficient number, both in terms of quantity and variety of themes, I will start to compile them into my next collection, which will then be released as a book.
There are many new writers and poets who are aspiring to get their work published. What would you say to them?
Go all out to complete that book which you are planning for a long while. Don’t get disappointed with delays as they are bound to happen. If you really plan and go for it, you can make it happen.
Would you like to give some message for our esteemed readers?
Today we live in a world of supersonic pace and agility. We have achieved tremendous progress in almost all fields possible. Whereas we have gained in speed, we seem to have lost the art of keeping calm, remaining composed and retaining our emotional depth in different situations. It is here that I feel poetry plays an important role in our lives. It shows us a clear picture of where we are and our contemporary times in a short, sweet and subtle manner; and also encourages us to develop our latent emotional depth and sense the world once again, not in a hurry but in a tranquil manner. So, I do appeal to the readers to read more and more, not only poetry, but any kind of genre you prefer. It will surely help to broaden your horizon, know more about people and cultures and tremendously increase your self-esteem and patience. Also, my book is available as a paperback and e-book through various online portals. To know more about my book and other works, the readers can visit my author site https://www.abhigos.com/. The readers can also contact me at various social media portals.
By Chirdeep Malhotra