According to these authors, their first step into the literary world started with their blog which gave them all that was needed — confidence, discipline and a dedicated audience.
Blogger-turned-author Ganga Bharani, for instance, credits her blog for sowing the first seed of thought to write a book.
“I started writing opinion pieces in newspapers when I was 15. Those which did not make it to print occupied space in my blog that was dead otherwise. I did not have even one reader then. My interest started inclining towards telling stories five years after my blog was created,” said Bharani, who presently has two books to her credit.
“I wrote short stories and blog series. One such series received good reviews and readers suggested that I publish it as a book.”
The initial journey wasn’t easy though, as Bharani received a lot of rejection mails from publishers before things turned around.
“After several rejections I decided to restrict myself to my blog. When I had written four blog series and all got a good response, a publisher approached me through a mutual friend and proposed the idea of publishing one of the series,” she says.
She says that now her blog readers have begun reading her books as well, thereby earning her a dedicated audience.
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Beloo Mehra, another blogger-turned-author, had a similar experience.
He says that the blog helped him muster the confidence to finally pen his first book on a subject that was close to his heart — the Indian education system.
“The idea for my first book — ABCs of Indian National Education — came up as a result of my blogging experience. It was in 2014, I had been blogging for a year when a month-long writing challenge came up. I chose to write on the challenges and issues facing the Indian education system,” Mehra said.
Blogging inspired him to adopt a more reader-friendly tone in book writing instead of a strictly academic one that is usually full of jargon and thus not easily understood by everyone.
“Once you are actively blogging and have a dedicated set of readers, you are also obliged to discipline yourself in posting regularly,” says Mehra. “This trait — discipline — is also crucial while writing a book.”
“Ultimately, you should write what you would want to read,” says Ritu Lalit, who has two blogs on cooking to her credit and is a published author. “And read as much as you can.”
Though the subjects of her blogs and novels vary, Lalit nevertheless credits her blogs in helping her realise “a long standing dream”.
Bharani also has a word of advice for budding authors. “Don’t get depressed by rejection. Keep writing. Remember, we all write to be read, not just to get published. If your story is readable, if not sellable, post it in your blog.”