Smita Shetty has been in the creative field for over seven years. In her spare time she enjoys involving herself in community work. She offers her creative support to an Asian women’s network group and has taken up several designing projects for a County Councils employee network group. Untruly yours is her debut novel.
Smita is originally from Mumbai and currently lives with her family in the United Kingdom.

Q.  So, this is your first book! What inspired you to start writing?

I was beginning to feel overwhelmed with a few personal setbacks. Losing my father was hard for me to come to terms with. Condolences are empty words; I don’t think anybody can feel the pain you go through when you lose someone that close. It’s immeasurable. Clichéd as it may sound, writing became my solace. It kept me distracted from reality.

Q. By reading this book, one can see that writing comes almost easily to you. Was it difficult to write a full length novel?

I wrote at my own pace. I wrote when I felt the need to escape from the real world. I enjoyed the experience of slipping into the fictional world and play out Natasha’s ditzy/klutzy character. No, I didn’t find it difficult to write a full length novel and could have quite easily churned out a few more pages. It was my decision to keep it tight and crisp.

Q. Why did you choose the topic of unfaithfulness and loss of marital ties as the theme for your first book?

Quite frankly, I didn’t set out to write about marital woes and grievances. It just happened. There were stories swimming in my head. I am passionate about raising awareness on deep rooted social and gender issues that still seem to exist in our society. Natasha’s story was the backdrop of the book and introducing different elements into her anguish just fell into place.

Q. In your book, you’ve subtly mentioned the various social evils in India. Which one, as per you, is the worst?

Child labour, human trafficking, domestic violence, gender inequality, dowry, substance misuse…the mere thought of these grim issues churns your stomach. How do you measure the degree of trauma an individual has endured? It’s unfair on those experiencing these issues or who’ve lived through the trauma, to pick the worst.

Q. You are quite a multi-talented person. Tell us about the other projects that you are part of.

I wouldn’t call myself multi-talented; in fact I am far from it. After the release of my book, I’ve had the pleasure of connecting with multi faceted reviewers like you. Respect to every one of you. There have been occasions when I would be nodding off on my keyboard and suddenly hear my inbox ping. More often than not it would be from a reviewer in India (5.5 hours time difference to be noted) sending me updates. That to be me is dedication!
I work full time and am an active steering group member for an employee network group within my organisation. I try and volunteer for an Asian women’s network group when time allows me to. If you get a chance to volunteer, grab it. It’s a fabulous opportunity to give something back to your community and in return gives you a humble platform to showcase your skills.

Q. What type of books we can expect from you next?

More romantic comedies! No surprises there. I have had so much fun etching Natasha’s character, it was almost worrying.

Q. Any tips and suggestions for budding authors?

You are the best judge of your work. Keep it real and relish the experience.

Chaarvi is a mixture of sugar, spice and everything nice, with just a hint of Chemical X. Or maybe more. Unsure of what to focus on, she has a foot in everything – be it music, movies or books. Or even fashion. Or cooking. Or politics. Or Economics.  Well, you get the drift. She is a hater of chick lit and all the riff-raff that comes along with it. Spends too much time on the internet researching on things that will come handy nowhere in life. But in reality, she’s a ninja and you better know it.

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