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Tribulations of the Marginalized

Richa Gupta Author Interview

Richa Gupta Author Interview

Slices of Life is a collection of stories that explore life from various perspectives. Where do you find your mind often wandering when writing?

When writing, my mind wanders to several places, people, events and incidents I have either witnessed or heard about, any of which may trigger my imagination to create a plausible scenario. Sometimes, an idea or an issue I feel passionately about acts as the trigger, and I develop the characters and events subsequently. Writing each of the 12 stories in the collection from October, 2018 to April, 2020 has been a distinct process usually based on contemporary incidents. While the initial episodes described in ‘The Young Visitor’ are inspired by my own experiences while searching for a suitable cook, ‘Dusk’, written in April, 2020, is based on the tribulations of migrant workers during the lockdown due to the pandemic in India. My mind also wanders to the different genres of fiction I have read. So, while ‘Future Love Story’, in the tradition of Sci-Fi, depicts a future dystopian society in the year 2090, ‘Knots’ is a whodunit, in the genre of detective fiction, in which the murderer’s identity is revealed at the end.

My favorite story from the collection was ‘The Incomplete Story’. Do you have a favorite story from the book?

It’s like asking a mother who is her favourite child. I am deeply invested in each story and want my readers now to tell me which story appeals to them most. Each reader gives me a different answer. So, I would like to believe that there’s something in it for everyone.

What were some themes you wanted to explore while creating your characters?

Some themes I wanted to explore include the suppression of a woman’s individuality (‘Mother and Daughter’ and ‘Watershed’), the aftermath of infidelity (‘Disclosure’ and ‘Knots’), a society based on eugenics and social distancing (‘Future Love Story’), tribulations of the marginalized section of society (‘Dusk’ and ‘The Theft’) and misguided priorities in life (The Choice). In a few other stories, the intention was to create authentic vignettes of life that evoke hilarity and social satire (‘The Young Visitor’ and ‘Bridal Wear’).

Are you continuing to write short stories? Will you be publishing another collection of stories in the future?

I love the process of writing short stories, which is a different experience from writing a novel. The gestation and maturation of a story is a shorter process, and I can write it on the go. I will definitely bring out another collection of stories in the future, but I am still deliberating on what will be my next publication.

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Slices of Life’ is a collection of short stories or vignettes that provide an immersive and entertaining experience of diverse scenarios of life in motion. They are slivers of existence with the ingredients of plot and characters, sprinkled with human emotion, pervaded by the aroma of human dilemmas and served in the platter of lucid language. Sometimes searing with agony and often pervaded with beauty and yearning in the midst of travails in a contemporary or futuristic reality, they explore relationships and the human struggle to find meaning amidst chaos. They describe the consequences of our choices and characters who are at the threshold of a discovery or have reached the zenith of tolerance. The universal themes and enduring images of commonplace individuals in the swirl of life are embedded in a mixed bag of genres ranging from bathos and futuristic SciFi to grim Realistic fiction and a suspenseful Whodunit.

Slices Of Life

Slices Of Life by [Richa Gupta]

Slices of Life holds a collection of riveting short stories that explore contemporary life from the perspective of compelling people living their life. Within every story we explore different themes through the varied challenges characters face. The drama is grounded, but the emotions are palpable. Richa Gupta is able to capture how life feels with stimulating language that evokes a range of emotions. It’s a sentimental collection of stories about life and the people in it.

What I liked most about this book was the way in which it portrayed people; they were always authentic and I could empathize with the characters in the story. Some stories explore how choices and shape our lives, while others probe the depths of passion and pain. I couldn’t nail down the genre of this book because its a combination of so many. Which is a perk for the reader as you are surely guaranteed to find a story that you like, a story that you will love, and a story that you can see yourself in.

Slices of Life can is perfect for reading on the go. You can get through a short story while waiting for the bus or waiting in line. Richa Gupta is able to achieve a high level of accessibility with her stories with simple language, short stories, and thought-provoking themes. Each story is vibrant, just like the book cover.

Richa Gupta has written a phenomenal piece of literature that holds something for everyone. This book reminds me of the documentary indie film Life in a Day by Kevin Macdonald and Loressa Clisby. A snapshot of intriguing people overcoming obstacles we can all relate to.

Pages: 184 | ASIN: B08CCB6J8M

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