Clever Fox Publishing: Tell us something about your background.
Angandeep Kr. Chatterjee: Well, I am from a middle-class family in Kolkata. I live with my mother, wife, daughter and sister there. I work in the IT sector as a testing professional and manage my writing career along with my professional corporate career.
Clever Fox Publishing: When and how did you start your writing journey?
Angandeep Kr. Chatterjee: I had always an urge for writing stories, whether in school or in short story competitions. It was while I was re-reading one of the favourite mystery and suspense thriller of mine, the idea of writing a Suspense and mystery thriller came to me. It was way back in 2017 that the idea had struck me. But it was not until 2021 end, that the story and the plot was concrete.
I started with the plot slowly and had to write and re-write and edit a lot to finally make it ready to share with the world. It was slow, but I tried to keep it steady as well, while working with the series and the plot.
Clever Fox Publishing: What is your book all about?
Angandeep Kr. Chatterjee: The book and the plot has many levels on itself. On one hand, it’s the story of a girl who joins a residential Engineering college and experiences freedom for the first time. There she meets a fellow student, who is mysterious as well as intriguing for her. She starts balancing her life with studies while enjoying the college and hostel life in the small town away from her family.
Now, on the other hand, things spiral out of control when students start disappearing from college and a professor is found dead. Everything was fine, until she stumbles upon something she never should have. And that starts a chain of events that leads to dangerous levels for her as well as the whole college itself.
In a way, the story is both fun with the details about college life, hostel, freedom and life. But on the other side, this story gives the readers a taste of mystery, suspense and thriller at the same time.
Clever Fox Publishing: What prompted you to write this book?
Angandeep Kr. Chatterjee: Being a voracious reader, I found there was a gap in the industry where college life and suspense have not been fused together. The teens and young adults nowadays don’t have that many new contents which they can relate to.
As someone who has spent 4 years in college hostel, I knew what and how the life was in a hostel. And that inspired me to write something where the college life and suspense was the focus.
Clever Fox Publishing: How was your pre-writing experience? What urged you?
Angandeep Kr. Chatterjee: I have attended the different LitFests, the book signing events and book fairs. I tried to gain knowledge into the genre I was writing by going through every kind of writing I had in my disposal.
It took some time to get a premise on what I wanted my readers to feel. Basically, it was something I myself wanted to feel. A fun ride with adventure and mystery side by side. And that was what urged me to write this story.
Clever Fox Publishing: How was your writing experience? Smooth or bumpy?
Angandeep Kr. Chatterjee: It was always bumpy. First with the premise, then with the plot and ultimately with the characters. I tried to keep things as grounded as possible, so that the readers can relate themselves with my story.
There have been times when I thought of letting things go as writing and editing took its toll. There have been situations where I had to delete chapter after chapters since things were not coming along. But it was perseverance that kept me going.
Clever Fox Publishing: How much did your publishers contribute? Did they ease the process for you?
Angandeep Kr. Chatterjee: The Cleverfox Publishing team is an excellent collection of professionals. They helped me with each step of publishing. The team guided me with everything, be it the cover or the content or help with marketing.
Without a great team like them, it would have been virtually impossible for me to get this book out in the world.
Clever Fox Publishing: What is the reaction of your family and friends to you writing this book?
Angandeep Kr. Chatterjee: Well, some were surprised. Some were like – ‘Oh, wait! You’re not joking?’ Once they knew I was not, they were overwhelmed with emotions. Some had patted my back, while some smiled at me as if this was an achievement of lifetime. They have supported me ever since they came to know that the book was coming out.
Clever Fox Publishing: Mention the people who supported you in this journey.
Angandeep Kr. Chatterjee: There are a lot.
First I would like to thank Lalitha Ravindran, my rockstar Literary Agent who had seen potential in my book.
It was Ranjan Mohapatra from Cleverfox Publishing, who noticed the upside of the book and decided to publish it.
Then there was my wife, Sudipta Chanda Burman and my mom, Sarbani Chatterjee, who have supported me throughout the journey.
Friends like Poonam Ganglani, Varsha Naik have been there always to help me out, sort out the facts and support me throughout.
Clever Fox Publishing: How is your book going to impact the readers?
Angandeep Kr. Chatterjee: I hope, they get a good taste of how a college life and hostel life goes. And if they are interested in mysteries and suspense, well, it’s a full package.
Most of all, it tells my readers that life is full of surprise and fun. You never know what awaits you on the next turn. So live life full, and expect to get surprised anytime. Enjoy your college life, hostel, your work and day to day activities, because you can find surprising things there.
Clever Fox Publishing: How do you deal with negative comments if any?
Angandeep Kr. Chatterjee: Negative comments are something that I yearn to see. It gives me a knowledge of what the readers are liking and what’s not good for them. It helps me to be on my toes and make my writing better. These negative comments are something that find the holes in my writing and helps me to mend that.
Clever Fox Publishing: Who are your literary mentors and role models?
Angandeep Kr. Chatterjee: In a word, Lalitha Ravindran. She is not just my mentor, she is a guide, philosopher and friend. She helped me to shape the book and made me tougher than I was.
As a role model, I would take only one name. Prateep Roy. His book- The Curse of Kukkutarma was something that I will never forget. I was lucky to have him read my book and give such a beautiful review.
Clever Fox Publishing: What are your upcoming writing ventures?
Angandeep Kr. Chatterjee: Currently, I am working on the same series itself.
There’s a collection of short stories with Aratrika, my protagonist and her best friend featured in and around the same Panagarh Institute of Engineering & Management. Then there’s a huge blockbuster novel of the same series that I am planning to finalize soon.
Once these are done, I have an idea to work on a new sci-fi series as well, but that’s all in the future.
Clever Fox Publishing: Any piece of advice for our aspiring writers?
Angandeep Kr. Chatterjee: One word – Perseverance. No matter how hard it is, no matter what obstacles you face, you have to sit down and write. Don’t think, don’t move, just practice writing. Be sincere, be consistent. You never know what the future holds.
Read a lot and write a lot, everyday. Create a habit of writing at a particular time of a day. And read to know more what’s going on in the writing industry and how you can contribute there.
There’s no better solution than your perseverance.