Amit Sharma is the author of fiction novel titled Ceilings by Lifi Publications. The book launch happened on 12 Jan 2016 at the World Book Fair in Delhi. The novel is a Family Saga spanning 130 years (from 1930 to 2065) and takes us through the lives of six protagonists who are bound by a secret and live in Delhi and Dalhousie. Amit Sharma has been working in a Software Firm since the last tenyears. He lives with his family in NCR. His wife is a teacher and they are blessed with a daughter with an amazing battery life. Amit is a voracious reader and devours books. His other hobbies include watching world cinema, traveling, digging into various cuisines, cooking, listening to music, painting, blogging (he used to blog earlier at Mashed Musings), making his daughter laugh and helping his wife with her unnecessary and prolonged shopping.
Q: The characters look pretty real. Is there a true-life inspiration behind FC?
A.The story has always lived with me. The book is based on true events; I have closely observed the six protagonists in real life. I cannot point a time when the idea germinated in my mind. It was as if it was always there. I knew that whenever I write a book, this will be my first story.
Aaryan is a character very close to my heart. He grew up in an era in which I grew up. We share a lot of experiences. Not many people know this but the incident of the burning Sikh in 1984, which changes Aaryan’s life when he was five was something that happened to me. I have drawn a lot of him with the ink of my anguish and frustration when I was growing up. I poured all my resentment in that character and some of the readers have come back saying that his chapter is their favorite.
Q: False Ceilings is a complex plot. How much time did you spend doing the research for it?
A. I read a few books, online articles, talked to my parents, saw documentaries and made excessive notes for almost six months before I was confident enough to write the first line of the manuscript. The story begins in 1930, in the pre-independence era and touches many historical events. I amalgamated the story with our history and made a few events as the turning point in the life of the characters. The timespan of 1950s-1970s was something my parents helped me with. I had long discussions with them to get the lifestyle of that era right. The story takes place in Delhi and Dalhousie. I had to display changes that both the places went through over the decades. It was a research filled with challenges and surprises. There is so much we don’t know; so much we ought to know.
Q. You have a technical background in education and profession. This book was always in your plan of things or happened due to some specific reason?
A.I have a Master’s degree in Physics from Delhi University and in Computers from Kurukshetra University. I have been a software professional for the last ten years.The book was never a part of the plan. Even when I was blogging non-stop for years, the thought never crossed my mind. I had a story in mind but I assumed I will write when I will be ready in a few more years. Then I ended up in Manchester with loads of time at my disposal and I decided to pick up the project instead of wasting my time sleeping. And that is how False Ceilings happened.
Q. What do you like to read? Do you have a favorite book or an author?
A. I don’t have a favorite author but I have many favorite books. I like writing that makes you think, that makes you go wow. I read a lot of modern classics but I love fantasy and science fiction too. Recently, I read The Orphan Master’s Son by Adam Johnson, which completely blew my mind.
Q. What’s up next? Any other book in the making?
A. Yes, my next book is almost finished. I will be sending it out for Beta Reading next month. Then I’ll pitch it. It’s a very modern story and spans eleven years. It’s about the journey of Sapna, a girl who belongs to a lower middle-class family living in Delhi; how she transforms from a naïve, simple-minded, college going girl to the most influential, richest and powerful woman in the world. She has a gift that turns her into a Goddess; someone the world fears and prays to. Her power changes the course of the future but is she able to cope up with the sacrifices it demands? Or does the power consume her in the end? It’s quite different from my first book and I am hoping the readers will enjoy the story as much as I enjoyed writing it.
The Author was interviewed for a blog tour hosted by The Book Club.
To read the review of False Ceilings, click here.