Chetan Bhagat on the challenges of writing from a female perspective
Giving his famous middle class male protagonist a rest, Chetan Bhagat’s new novel One Indian Girl introduces you to Radhika Mehta, a rich investment banker at Goldman Sachs with an opinion on everything. The first person narrative traces all the ups and downs she faces in the process of finding a partner. Talking about adopting a female tone for the first time, the 42-year old says, “It wasn’t just penning dialogues. I was writing her thoughts as well. When readers pick up the book, they shouldn’t feel that it’s written by a man.” While the concept emerged seven years ago, the bestselling author couldn’t muster the courage to confidently speak from the point of view of a woman. “I have judged women unfairly in the past, often dismissing their emotions as drama,” says the Mumbai-based author who did his share of research before penning down this one. Bhagat has come a long way since his first book Five Point Someone, 12 years ago, with five out his seven novels making it to the silver screen. “I like writing stories and good, interesting ones at that. My natural style is light and entertaining so it makes it easy to adapt,” he says when quizzed on whether his writing process has moulded itself to cinema. Currently the author is taking a break from writing and will focus on the shoot of Half Girlfriend (based on his book of the same name), scheduled to release next May.
Published by Rupa & Co. `176. Available at Starmark. Details: 30083560
— Lavanya Lakshminarayanan