About Deepa Ragunathan
Deepa is an avid reader and writer. She can always be found with a notebook and pen around her, and enjoys using words to define the world she views. When she’s not writing, she is usually with coffee, reading. She loves cats, witty quotes and comfort.
LiFT: Tell us about your book, the journey of writing it and its content.
Deepa Ragunathan: This book is a collection of words. It has some of the short stories and poems I’ve written over the years, and end up reading over and over again. Every piece has a part of me and is dedicated to the people I’ve met, who’ve inspired me in some shape or form.
LiFT: Why you chose this title?
Deepa Ragunathan: I walk a thin line between pessimism and optimism. I imagine the worst, and hold on to the hope that I can get through it if it comes to pass. My writings inherit that from me. No matter how it twists or turns, I end it on a hopeful note, or an incomplete one, with a promise of better things ahead. I associate that with midnight: Things can get dark and gloomy, but the dawn isn’t far behind, and it is meant for others like me, who embrace that darkness while waiting for light.
LiFT: When did you realize that you want to be a writer and what’s your inspiration behind it?
Deepa Ragunathan: Some time in school- I love reading, and I’ve always read pretty fast, so it wasn’t long before it got hard to find books that completely engrossed me. I decided that if I couldn’t find such stories, I’d write them! Of course, I always thought I’d write a novel first, but the ink flowed towards snippets instead, and I couldn’t be prouder.
LiFT: Where do you see yourself ten years down the line in the world of literature?
Deepa Ragunathan: Hopefully with a lot more books under my belt! I really hope people enjoy my writings, because I enjoyed myself when I wrote them.
LiFT: How much do you think marketing or quality of a book is necessary to promote a particular book and increase its readers?
Deepa Ragunathan: I focus more on quality than marketing, but both are very important. Marketing brings people to the table, and quality convinces them to take a seat. I put my best foor forward, and chose my best stories and poems out there to represent me. If word of it reaches people and I get even a few more people interested, I’d call it a win.
LiFT: What is the message you want to spread among folks with your writings?
Deepa Ragunathan: That there’s beauty in the mundane. Most of my stories weave fantasies into the common-place. I talk about things you’ve seen, but not always noticed, like the dreams that leave you refreshed, or that specific blanket you prefer even though there are others like it. I focus on keeping things light-hearted and enjoying those moments. There aren’t many deep revelations, but it will still feel warm.
LiFT: What do you do apart from writing?
Deepa Ragunathan: I’m a software developer. That’s my day job, and I’ve loved programming since I first wrote one. Like spoken languages, coding plays with words and syntaxes, and I enjoy drawing those parallels.
LiFT: What are the activities you resort to when you face a writer’s block?
Deepa Ragunathan: I enjoy board games. I put my story aside on pause, and call up a friend or two and head out to a board room cafe, or a walk and just hang out.
LiFT: Are you working on your next book? If yes, please tell us something about it.
Deepa Ragunathan: I’ve been working on this novel for a few months now. It is about a girl who accidentally awakens a Goddess. I want to write about how I think any deity will react to the average life. As a deist, my book doesn’t touch upon any religion, but on empathy, compassion and curiosity.
LiFT: What are your suggestions to the budding writers/poets so that they could improve their writing skills?
Deepa Ragunathan: Keep writing. Some times, you have this sentence in your head that’s so beautiful, you want to engrave it in time. Write it down, don’t worry about what comes before or after. Eventually, you’ll have enough of such lines to string together into a story. Editing comes at the end of the process, so don’t let it curb your thoughts.