Interview with Samir Satam author of Postcards From Memory, published by First Step Publishing
We happen to catch up with the poet and his book available on all major Indian online websites and available on Google playstore. Its Samir Satam's First Book and it happens to top the charts of amazon.in.
WF:- What is your writing process? Do you follow a regular routine?
Samir: No, I do not follow a regular routine. For me to write, I need to be in a certain frame of mind which is possible only when I have a free mind. I have tried writing by deliberately fuelling my imagination but it doesn’t work for me as the pieces that come on paper in doing so do not have that natural flow to it.
WF:- What are the most important elements of good writing? According to you, what tools are must-haves for writers?
Samir: The most important element for me is a peaceful environment. In today’s age note taking tools on smart phones also help to jot down pointers to be worked on later. An internet connection is a must to research the topic I choose to write on. When you write on true events, you are aware that there is a certain responsibility attached to the content. You cannot afford to be historically and politically wrong in those cases.
WF:- What motivates you to write?
Samir: When it comes to poetry, anything in vicinity can be a source of inspiration. Sometimes you realize that your view of a certain thing might differ when thought from a different perspective. When you are thinking as a poet your vision alters to let the subject enter your mind in a different way than usual. The most important part is once you get hold of that thought process and follow it, words start flowing rhythmically, naturally, almost as if you tend to feel you are not writing that poem but the poem is coming to you piece by piece. All you have to do is accumulate it on paper and work on it to make it crisper.
WF:- Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it?
Samir: Yes, I do suffer from a writer’s block. Every writer tends to. Normally I try to find what chain of thought is stopping me from thinking clearly. In my lowest moments, I don’t stop taking notes. It is wonderful how those same words which mean nothing at a point can inspire you to write when your mind is free again. Sometimes when I have started writing in prose and get stuck at a point in between, I stop writing from the start and approach the subject from the conclusion that I want to reach to and let my thoughts work backwards. It helps in giving a fresh expression to the same thoughts. The most interesting thing you can do is when you are facing a serious wall of a writer’s block, stop everything and start writing about the thoughts that are blocking your mind. It can be anything. If your mind has gone blank, you can end up with an interesting write-up on your own state of mind at that point. It will help you later to deal with a similar situation.
WF:- Do you have any advice for other writers?
Samir: I am not yet proven myself as a writer to advice my peers on how to write. Personally for me what has helped is my ability to Read, Read, Read and while doing so Observe… It helps me to improvise.
WF:- What book(s) / author(s) have influenced your life and writing?
Samir: There are quite a few. Different books are special for different reasons. Some for their style, some for the content… The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand, All Poetry books of Gulzar, Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte, The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje, Etudes by Aseem Kaul, Being in Love by Osho, Without Fear by Kuldip Nayar, Black Wind and Other Poems by Deepti Naval
WF:- Being published for the first time, Do share with us the experience as your book is soon to come out?
Samir: I do not see my first book as a goal. I see it more as an important landmark in my journey to perceive my passion further. Having said that, the process of reaching this particular landmark in itself has been an interesting ride and has given me quite an insight in the world of new age publishing. Till now my experience with First Step Publishing has been great. And I look forward to carry on my relationship with them beyond books.
WF:- Any writing rituals?
Samir: Writing in a secluded corner of a particular coffee shop on a weekday when there are no crowds has helped a great deal. I prefer to sit facing the wall to avoid distractions. As strange as it may sound, the write-ups that have turned out quite well for me have been the ones I have written after having a couple of drinks. I guess it has something to do with the relaxing effects of alcohol. I am not trying to increase the sales of wine but it works for me. Different things may work for different people.
WF:- Tell us some more about your book.
Samir: Postcards from Memory is a collection of my poems that took birth in me in last three years. Some of them are quite personal while some are born out of pure imagination. Some of them are just an attempt to connect to pain that other people might be feeling in certain unfortunate situations. These poems are classified in 10 different categories based on the themes that these poems are built on.
WF:- How hard is it to establish and maintain a career in poetry writing?
Samir: I would say it is pretty hard. I remember a literary agent telling me that you have to be a celebrity to publish a poetry book. I still can’t figure out what has celebrity status got to do with writing poetry. Nothing but I realize that selling a book has more to do with a famous face. I guess it is more about market demands and the attraction that people have towards celebrity life. But ironically if you see some of the most legendary poets like Gulzarsahab prefer to lead a rather simple life away from the glitz and glamour that accompanies the life of a celebrity.
WF:- Any Advice for budding writers / authors?
Samir: Do not change your material as per market demands. Write what you believe in. Even if it never gets published, understand that it is not you who is losing out on much but the world is missing out on something beautiful.
WF:- Any last thoughts for our readers?
Samir: ‘Last thoughts’ sounds more like I am on my death bed ;-) To readers, I would like to say, “Just like friends, choose your books wisely.”
You can catch grab a copy of the book from CLICK HERE
To Know more about the author CLICK HERE