‘Paperback Dreams’ tells what author has to face
Rahul Saini says an author goes through a lot of harassment at many levels in order to get published
His fourth book “Paperback Dreams”, published by Penguin, is an “honest expression of my experiences from the past – some ugly truths that I discover in the industry”.
The novel is about three young writers Jeet Roy, Rohit Sehdev and Karun Ahuja who are ready to do anything to earn instant fame and are exploited by their publisher.
“Some people may find it shocking but an author also goes through a lot of harassment, at many levels in order to get published,” says Saini.
“And even after publishing three bestsellers, I found it particularly hard to get my fourth book, ‘Paperback Dreams’, published. No one was agreeing to publish it – no was willing to take the risk I would say till I went to Penguin which was my last hope (and honestly, at that time I was thinking that I was being a bit optimistic and most probably I would need to self publish my book),” the Jalandhar-born writer says.
The characters in the novel have sprung out from the author’s own mind, his own imagination.
“This book is an honest picture of what goes on behind the curtains in a particular section of the publishing industry in India – how popular fiction has developed in India in the past few years and what changes it has gone, and is going though” says Saini, who previous novels are ‘Those Small Lil Things’, ‘Just Like in the Movies’ and ‘The Orange Hangover’.
According to him, the dramatic rise in publishing in the past few years is because almost everyone is an aspiring author these days.
“People write and they want to get published quite desperately for their own reasons. I don’t really think it’s because of the relaxation and flexibility in the publishing norms- art would always exist and find its way, irrespective of the laws and norms.”
Saini also feels that Indian readers might have a lot of options to choose from these days but they are still selective.
“No one ends up reading all the books available in the market, no one can actually. No one buys all the books in a book shop,” he says.