Hyderabad: Every teenager, before going to sleep, asks himself/herself where exactly his/her life is headed. Academics, crushes, love, friendship — they all seem to be of most importance to college-goers. Debutant author Vinaya Patil captures the essence of these young adults in her heart-warming novel One Life to Love, which she wrote in just a month-and-a-half. “It just flowed. I didn’t have to pause to think,” says the Bengaluru-based techie-turned-author.
Written in simple, local dialect, the book revolves around four engineering students, Saachi, Riya, Manish and Aadi. “Saachi is a level-headed, fun-loving girl. She is in love with Aadi, who is averse to the idea of love. Riya is a spontaneous rich kid, who likes a casanova, Vidit, but Manish is quietly in love with her. Through the course of the book, they battle their inner demons to arrive at a life they want to live,” narrates Vinaya.
The book is set against the backdrop of Bengaluru, Goa and a little bit of Pune. “I lived in Pune for a year- and-a-half as my husband is from there,” says the mother of a four-year-old who admits that there are shades of her in both the female characters. “I want to ask students to go live their dreams, because parents can tell them what to do with their lives only to an extent,” she says.
The cheerful 35-year-old began writing only in 2011 when she was required to write an article for her office newsletter. “I was the team lead at Accenture. I wrote an article about motherhood, back when my son was six months old and it took me ten minutes to write that. And before it was even published, I had people telling me how touching it was. Maybe that’s where it all began,” she muses.
It took her almost three years to get her book published. “It’s challenging because there are so many authors waiting to be published. I had my share of rejections,” she admits. Now, she has another book in the making, details of which she won’t disclose yet.
Vinaya has had a stint with theatre groups as well. “We were part of a workshop called First Rush by theatre group Evam, which is for beginners. When we staged a play, we really loved it and started our own production house later, called Red Pill. But when I went to the USA with my husband, I had to give that up,” she says. Her husband, in fact, has been her source of encouragement, and his mother, an inspiration for her.
“My mother-in-law eagerly read every line I wrote and narrated the story to my parents. Unfortunately, she couldn’t live to see the final draft. My book is dedicated to her,” she shares. The Tintin and Asterix lover, who grew up reading books that filled the void of a sibling, is now a full-time author, freelancing with a theatre training company....