SHARJAH -“It was the books I read in the libraries at school and in my home that shaped my mind in ways that nothing else could,” said best-selling and critically acclaimed Indian author, Anita Nair, in an interactive session with students at the Sharjah International Book Fair yesterday (Sunday).
“Reading opened my mind to a world of imagination and to the beauty of language,” she said, advising young aspiring writers to cultivate the reading habit. “One of the main tools of writing is language. Reading authors of different cultures had the biggest impact on me for it helped me see how language is used. I learnt how to wield the pen to find the words that exactly match what I want to say.”
In the last 20 to 30 years with books being adapted to the big screen, writers have acquired a kind of star status, she said. “But I want you to remember that fame is only a fickle friend; riches too. Your creative pursuit should define who you are as a person. It shouldn’t be about where it will lead you to.”
Great story ideas alone will not make you a writer, “until you start writing,” said Anita. “Give yourself the time and bandwidth to write 400 words every day, and in just a year, you could have a ‘book’ in hand.”
What is most important, she added, “is to have the courage of conviction – that even if no one reads my book, I must do it to the best of my ability.”