Thursday, March 5, 2020

# 20 Questions

20 Questions with Kiran Bhat Author of 'we of the forsaken world' #20questions

Today's guest is Kiran Bhat, author of the literary fiction, we of the forsaken world. Kiran is here today to answer 20 questions about his life, writing and goals.

1. Are you a morning writer or a night writer? I am a morning writer. I wake up at eight, take a half-hour to stay in bed wishing I could sleep for longer, then ready my tea, my early morning fruits, and start clacking away at the keyboard. I usually finish by noon. 

2. Do you outline or are you a pantster? Since I write works that have such an intricate cast of characters and locales, I have to be an outliner, definitely. 

3. Which comes first – plot or character? A mix, but I think I put a lot of emphasis on structure, and how my characters fit into that. 

4. Noise or quiet when working on your manuscript? Quiet, for sure, though I often live in countries – like India – where outside noise is a constant. I don’t tend to mind it as long as it remains like static in the background, but I can’t write at all if people are talking in front of me. I would rather just eavesdrop. 

5. Favorite TV show? A lot of dark anime. Think Neon Genesis Evangeleon, Serial Experiments Lain,or Monster. 

6. Favorite type of music? The bad pop music of the moment, which gives me the energy to live outside of myself and dance. 

7. Favorite craft besides writing? Learning languages, which I also tend to be known to be decent at.

8. Do you play a musical instrument? Nope

9. Single or married? Happily single.

10. Children or no? Happily childless.

11. Pets? Travel too much for pets.

12. Favorite place to write? On my dining room table.

13. Favorite restaurant? Travel too much to have one.

14. Do you work outside the home? I haven’t lived in my physical home for almost a decade, and change country every few months. That being said, I always try to stay at my physical house of the moment and write from there.

15. What was the name of the last movie you saw? Some Bollywood movie. It really touched me, but I can’t remember its name, as I watched it on a plane.

16. Favorite outdoor activity? Jogging. I have to lose the kilos somehow.

17. Pet peeve? I’m a fairly tolerant person, but I can’t stand a lack of tolerance. A paradox, no?

18. Your goal in life? To write works of art that truly challenge humanity to think in new ways.

19. Your most exciting moment? When a person really gets what I have wrote, and expresses a connection with it.

20. The love of your life? The boy of the moment – whoever happens to be inspiring during my orgasm, that is. 

Kiran Bhat was born in Jonesboro, Georgia to parents from villages in Dakshina Kannada, India. An avid world traveler, polyglot, and digital nomad, he has currently traveled to more than 130 countries, lived in 18 different places, and speaks 12 languages. He currently lives in Melbourne, Australia.

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The Internet has connected – and continues to connect – billions of people around the world, sometimes in surprising ways. In his sprawling new novel, we of the forsaken world, author Kiran Bhat has turned the fact of that once-unimaginable connectivity into a metaphor for life itself.
In, we of the forsaken world, Bhat follows the fortunes of 16 people who live in four distinct places on the planet. The gripping stories include those of a man’s journey to the birthplace of his mother, a tourist town destroyed by an industrial spill; a chief’s second son born in a nameless remote tribe, creating a scramble for succession as their jungles are destroyed by loggers; a homeless, one-armed woman living in a sprawling metropolis who sets out to take revenge on the men who trafficked her; and a milkmaid in a small village of shanty shacks connected only by a mud and concrete road who watches the girls she calls friends destroy her reputation.

Like modern communication networks, the stories in , we of the forsaken world connect along subtle lines, dispersing at the moments where another story is about to take place. Each story is a parable unto itself, but the tales also expand to engulf the lives of everyone who lives on planet Earth, at every second, everywhere.

As Bhat notes, his characters “largely live their own lives, deal with their own problems, and exist independently of the fact that they inhabit the same space. This becomes a parable of globalization, but in a literary text.”

Bhat continues:  “I wanted to imagine a globalism, but one that was bottom-to-top, and using globalism to imagine new terrains, for the sake of fiction, for the sake of humanity’s intellectual growth.”

“These are stories that could be directly ripped from our headlines. I think each of these stories is very much its own vignette, and each of these vignettes gives a lot of insight into human nature, as a whole.”

we of the forsaken world takes pride of place next to such notable literary works as David Mitchell’s CLOUD ATLAS, a finalist for the prestigious Man Booker Prize for 2004, and Mohsin Hamid’s EXIT WEST, which was listed by the New York Times as one of its Best Books of 2017

Bhat’s epic also stands comfortably with the works of contemporary visionaries such as Umberto Eco, Haruki Murakami, and Philip K. Dick.

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