An Interview With Azar Author Of The Book “Situational Sins”August 23, 2021 0 By The Literature Today
Aashi: Before we begin with the interview, I would like to extend a warm congratulations from our team for “Situational Sins.” It seems to have become quite a sensation soon after its publication. How do you feel about it?
Azar: It’s indeed and very thanks for that Aashi. The way people are receiving and the reviews I received to date are highly positive. Including you, I find all the leading critics and reviewers giving a high recommendation to “Situational Sins”, which is one such dream of any author for his book.
Aashi: Tell us the story behind the creation of “Situational Sins.” What were the events that led to its creation?
Azar: After very good learning from my previous book, I wished my second attempt to break my own comfort zone of routine Rom-Com. That’s when I came across few survivor stories of sex workers. Most of them are alienated from our routine lifestyle and I wished what if they were all seen from a different perspective. And that’s how it all started…
Aashi: As an author, do you think Balika’s fate was justified owing to the fact that she was more of an innocent soul caught up in the ugly in “Situational Sins”?
Azar: Balika’s story could easily be anyone’s story. It’s not about justifying her fate, it’s a reflection of the reality that was (and is) happening, at this very moment, if you ask me. All guilt was once innocent, and all innocents were always the victims. When you claim a sex mafia-like Balika, to be an innocent, it means I’ve succeeded in what I intended to narrate. (laughs)
Aashi: At the beginning of the novel, you seem to be using the technique which a journalist would use. Did you have any other ideas for plot construction or chose this in the first place in “Situational Sins”?
Azar: Ok, let me be honest here. After Engineering I opted to study UG in Journalism on my own interest, through distance education. Though I ended up dropping out in my final year, I could realize the power of media and being a journalist. I also wished why not to start a series named “The Journalist” (Arya), just like Sherlock Holmes. Maybe, I would continue doing it in the future. So, to answer your question, I’m also a student of Journalism and so I think I can see from that perspective as well. The moment I read articles of sex survivors, I wanted a Journalist to anchor the plot and the flow, and so I did.
Aashi: You are known to be a narrator too. Do you narrate stories verbally like “Situational Sins” or have other plot ideas too?
Azar: (Laughs) I wanted to be a storyteller, either by written words or verbally. And for verbal storytelling, people used to say I’m gifted with a unique voice for my passion. So, I have narrated many podcasts of various self-written stories, with soul-stirring music and published them on my Youtube Channel, ‘Story Master’. For now, my podcasts will be available only on Tamil, as it’s under my comfort zone. In the future, I wish to extend it in English, as well.
Aashi: As an author of “Situational Sins,” would you describe yourself being influenced by other authors? Which author would they be?
Azar: It’s a common question from most of my readers. My only response that would surprise them would be, ‘I’m not an avid reader’. I gain my ideas from what I observe and how I observe. If there is one author who inspired me, it would be Kalki of a masterpiece Historic Fictional Tamil Novel, ‘Ponniyin Selva. This one novel can teach a writer about various basics and nuances of writing. I just followed a gist of his style, imbibed into it, and created my own version of storytelling. Initially, I was not sure if this would work out. But receiving a warm welcome, from leading reviewers meant I’ve done justice to myself.
Aashi: “Situational Sins” has introduced you as a promising writer. Can the readers expect more work from you in the future? Please share your plans.
Azar: Definitely, why not! Many leading reviewers including you, have shown interest to read my future works, after reading “Situational Sins”. It motivates me as a writer and I’m sure to improve myself on the ways of impressing furthermore, with my style of writing. For now, I’ve two ideas in line, out of which one is my dream project in Tamil (a historic fiction) and another would be an emotionally driven detective novel in English. Yet, as I used to say, the future is uncertain. I may be impressed and carried away with some other storyline, ending up with a new attempt to my readers, as well.
Aashi: How easy or difficult was it for you to pick situations and build characters that would hit the sensitive nerves of the readers and also open their eyes at the same time in “Situational Sins”?
Azar: I feel its all about observation of people’s emotional values, when they come across certain strange situations. I always have this curiosity of keen observation on the people I meet in my life. I listen to people’s life and I make them narrate it. I strongly believe that nobody can narrate your story better than you. And being a listener of many such stories,makes you exposed to understand how much importance people give to what sort of situations; what was their decision and why they’ve made it. That’s how I read the nerves of people and I’m continuing to do so. As I used to say, I believe in creating strong characters and placing them in appropriate situations, builds an interesting story on its own. I infringe my ideas of life into the characters I build and relate to the reality of stories I’ve listened to. If you ask me whether it’s difficult, I would say “yes”, but I enjoy doing it.
Aashi: As a title, “Situational Sins” carries associations of the bible and modern retouch. What is the story behind its creation?
Azar: For a biblical touch, I would say I had opted it just to relate to all three major religions. I mean here that my story has a strong connection between Hinduism & Islam, so I sarcastically left a Christianity touch, to relate to all three major religions. But as a title, I was clear on what exactly I wanted people to know and relate to the whole context of my story. I even revealed the book to be carnal damnation, a sexual hell, from the life of sex workers. And if you’ve noticed beyond the front laid plot, each character of the story would have committed a sin, forced by situations. Situations drive our decisions of life and so our sins, as well.
Aashi: Tell us a little about your Youtube channel, “Story Master.”
Azar: We all love to listen to a story than reading it. That’s how audio podcasts are becoming more attractive these days. Believe me, if I say the concept and name of Story Master, started way before recent day audio podcasts, almost 9years back then. Later, I wished to publish it on Youtube last year and that’s how the “Story Master” channel began.
Aashi: How would you describe your literary endeavors and all that went into your making as a writer before “Situational Sins” materialized?
Azar: Horrible it was! (Laughs) Just like most of those budding authors, I too had faced many discouragements and demotivation at a very young age, for my grammatical errors in what I wrote. When I said I wanted to write, people hardly believed that I would. I wasn’t from a highly qualified profile, in terms of English speaking/writing skills, and many people mocked my style. If people named it determination, maybe that’s what I’ve practiced all through the past 10years to what I’m now. I knew it’s a long way ahead, yet I’m happy that I never gave up to date.
Aashi: There are so many unique perspectives in your “Situational Sins.” What is the most challenging thing about writing such complexity in a simpler version?
Azar: Perspective is what the whole pattern of the story is and each character has their own. It’s extremely complex to write them without confusing the readers and holding the suspense from the first page to the last. Even on the last page of the book, I’ve tried to reveal a clue. And if I’m right, it’s notably India’s first book on Rashomon’s pattern of narration. There are lot many unique features a book can hold, which was dealt with in “Situational Sins”. This unique book has stories of sex workers; Female Mafias anchoring the plot; an ‘emotional’ crime thriller; Rashomon effect of narration; a powerpack of twists and turns; poetic verses for seasoning; a family drama among relationships; motivational philosophies for life; justifying a criminals crime; digging the true corners of sex trafficking, and not to miss this being a much needed sexual awareness. And now, you could imagine how challenging it would have been for me (laughs).
Aashi: I wish you luck with your future ventures and hope to read more powerful and exciting books from your pen. Thank you for sparing your time.
Azar: Thank you Aashi, it was a great interview and well-built questions. Thoroughly enjoyed answering them, as it made me dig some of those sweetest and bitter most past experience, undergone while writing such a riveting novel. And to those, who read this interview, I would extend my thanks and encourage them not to miss this highly recommended crime thriller. It’ll leave you with a highly motivating and captivating impact, at the end. New attempts like these, needed encouragement from readers, to push them big and pull more of better than these. So… Go… Grab Your Copy of “Situational Sins”, Now…! Stay Home… Stay Safe… & Support such Books!