Kumar Kinshuk is a renowned author known for his creative writings and novels. An alumnus of T. A. Pai Management Institute (TAPMAI), he has been writing for a long time and has not lost track.
Kumar Kinshuk has written four novels that have received great responses from all his readers. Some of Kumar Kinshuk’s popular novels are Ritualistic Murder and Two Indian Girls. He currently lives in Kolkata and is fond of home gardening.
In an exclusive chat with Icy Tales, Kumar Kinshuk opened up about his journey as a writer and how he balances life evenly. He also spoke about how he is willing to keep learning from others to get better.
Q) How did your journey of becoming an author begin, and what’s your story behind it?
Kumar Kinshuk – I got into it quite late. When I was a kid, I used to write a lot., And also that point time. I used to write many financial and related articles, some of which got published in newspapers until that point. In the beginning, I used to carry a ton of my articles in 1990, but those were typical IP-related articles, and I’ve written a lot of essays.
My dad was a senior professor of English at a university. So, because he used to read a lot of stuff, a lot of the books, and we used to interact and talk about the stories of women and a lot of those things that while I was growing, he used to narrate all of those stories to me. It had a very positive effect on my reading. Then, I was not much into novels and other things. I used to read more comics than that. While I got into my profession after my MBA almost 20 years later, and I am working full-time.
Then, I had this in mind let me start a book because that is the end game for me. I have always wanted to be a writer. So, when I started in 2015 or 2016, I could not ever complete that because I did not have a structure in mind. And I was writing a story, a novel or two, but I never had a structure. So, I created two powerful characters, and those characters took me on a journey, but I did not know the endgame of that.
Then my dad told me that just rambling and writing something would not take you anywhere. You need to figure it out. They’ll always take you in their direction. One character would like to help with the other. So, what do you do? Which direction would you take as an author? You have an integrated structure. He taught me the structuring of it that you need to structure the novel, and then you need to come back into starting your journey and then go.
So, got maybe 2 or 3 hours more every evening after the Zoom calls, which suddenly became famous or infamous. And that’s been actually over the last one year; I wrote five novels, and I published all of those five novels myself.
Q) Where do you get the motivation to write your work?
Kumar Kinshuk- So, I am self-motivated as far as the right thing is concerned. I don’t need anyone to motivate me. The only question was timing. And you know, after a day job, once you are home at 8:00 in the night, do you have it left in you? It’s whether you can still maybe have your dinner, have some meeting with the family and still get back to writing.
So, many times, you think things are not working for me. I did most of my work and said it is thick and tough. And then, if you are to self-publish, that’s a big challenge again because you are a business owner that way.
So, you have to publish, and you have to do the marketing. You have to make your sales effort to do everything, use that advertising so important all of these. So, it would be best if you learned a lot about that. You need to implement all of that and then become a best seller. So that’s been the journey.
Q) Your work mainly focuses on the thriller genre. So, when did you realize that this was your strength?
Kumar Kinshuk – I wouldn’t say thriller genre. In the USA, what happens is people are particular. They would write only one genre. They would not write in multiple genres because the kind of inflected readership base is the name, and this is the genre they are writing.
So, you know, as an author, you have to create new stories every hour. So, the stories that take you apart may not turn out eventually to be thrillers or mystery novels. But in India, I think most people have been able to be multiple creative successfully.
My first novel, ‘The Two Indian Girls,’ eventually became a mystery novel. It’s not a thriller. And, a lot of feedback I keep getting even now, I found it a quieter novel, it’s a mystery. But if you see the book, it’s very clearly written, and it’s not a thriller; it’s a mystery novel. So, the novel was Fatal Belief. It’s a big mystery novel, a pretty lovely mystery novel, and I would say, one of my best books.
A compelling mystery novel, Fatal Belief, and Daybreak. But while I wrote that this was supposed to be a trilogy, eventually, some of my feedback from my readers came back saying, you’ve shown this guy in the picture that used to be a big guy is already a strong person of it. But we don’t know the back story of how he became a big guy because for an inspector to be well-known across a state, and it’s not easy to be well-known across India.
So, what’s the backstory then? I wrote the first novel, the prequel to the story, Ritualistic Murder, and that isn’t over now because that’s one time I was reading for those nights that I was reading the trial. I was reading a lot of other industrialized genres. And because I had done mystery novels, the prequel is an out and out know edge of this ritualistic murder.
But having written these four novels and having seen that, for example, in India, you have not only the big guys like that, but even do nonfiction and fiction. Then I also felt I had other creative stories, and I wrote very few things. And since this is not an imaginary story, there are multiple anecdotal stories on there, but there are specific real stories, and all the characters are real.
The location and descriptions of those are all-natural. So, this is an entertaining novel about seven kids who are part of joint family care. And in a joint family, while we were growing up, we did not have today’s gadgets.
For example, you did not have television sets. What do you do in a joint family if you don’t have any of this? You play, right? You go out or play in your bedroom, and you hear many stories while creating many stories. So, we’ve created a lot of stories, and all of that has gone into this novel.
Q) Apart from writing, you go on live sessions and interviews with other authors and speakers. So, what do you learn from doing all this?
Kumar Kinshuk – For me, it’s two things. Why do I do it? One is; obviously, I want to connect with some of my fellow authors. Some of these are big guys in themselves. They have been there and done that for the last 15 years. Some of them are very active on social media. They have been published by Penguin, Random House, and Harper Collins while I was still a fish in the water. So, there’s a big difference.
While Indie authors are becoming more prominent now and getting accepted more and more in India, also in the U.S. and the west of the U.S. and the authors have completely overturned the previously published thought that it’s not output and it’s that that industry itself has grown by leaps and bounds over there. And therefore, rebels have started coming to India with those who used a challenging transition earlier.
They used to feel, okay, it’s not a penguin book, I should not be. That used to be the initial hesitance, and I don’t know. This is some Tom, Dick, and Harry has written this book, and no one has published it. He has gone ahead and published it.
I’m not even judging you for publishing. But when Amazon allows you to publish your book on a Kindle direct publishing mode, why do you want to give somebody the royalty? Why can’t you publish it yourself?
You’ll go ahead and publish and see what happens. And because you become the owner of your publishing business, you can take all in terms of your advertising, your networking skills, and all of that.
But because I was from this Indie background, I wanted to connect with these published authors and figure out what they’re doing, whether they’re going the way now or not. This was because I was new to this, and they had been there for ten years. It was also a lot of learning for me, and now they have become good friends.
I can write to them if there is something I need help with them. So, three of them were very helpful in my book. They read the book, and they gave their feedback on the book. So, you get to know people, and you will help each other. Right? And for me, because really in the background, this is all great help. And in the future, if they need help, I’m there for them.
Q) How do you deal with failures and challenges? And when you are clueless about what to do next, what exactly do you do?
Kumar Kinshuk – I go back to the basics. I start structuring the entire issue of what the issue is because I have a management background. I drill down like, where is the issue? Why am I feeling the way I am feeling? For example, feeling depressed? Am I feeling lonely? Am I feeling unhappy? Am I feeling sad? Am I feeling distressed about something? What is it that is bugging me?
I don’t figure out where the issue lies and why it is happening. I try and then create solutions for that. So, if I do A, B, and C, which one will help me the most, and is it something I have been keeping for the future. So, I say figure out the creative solution.
There have been times when the solution has come to me, maybe after days of thinking, and the implementation may have taken me even six months. I am not, you know; I don’t plan for ten years. But I know where I am and where I need to be, and I take life as it comes. I like to be happy. And I am the happiest when I’m writing.
Q) Do you think e-books give readers the feel of reading an actual book?
Kumar Kinshuk – I think a lot of water has gone down that tunnel. It’s been sometime now that e-books have been available. E-books have been there, and many people are now reading e-books on their phones, iPads, computers, and Kindle systems. I’m so happy to see a lot of work happening on the e-book zone and the new baby on the block.
But you’re right, a lot of people have still not taken to e-books and that well of a book in your hand. And I think some of the people who were the senior people in my generation, owns a lot of people and generation senior to me they won’t have they can do e-books. It is something that still guides people.
But then, for youngsters, even where you store so many books nowadays, people keep shifting locations and houses the best you have and can control that only should there be if, for example, tomorrow, which won’t happen.
That’s okay. And things will take care of that anyway because those things can never go wrong. But if you’ve been buying from Amazon and Amazon as a company, goes bust all your books, coordinate all your life’s work, but that won’t ever happen.
Q) We see this transition of books on the big screen as films. Would you want one of your books to be converted into a film?
Kumar Kinshuk- Absolutely! I think it’s a dream of every writer. Everyone wants their books to be either created in a series or into a movie. Two Indian girls have been a bestseller for a long time. I am working with a huge agency. So, when I have something on that, I put it up on my social media.
Kumar Kinshuk is working with an agency to get his novels to come on the big screen. He is very excited to see it happen. He said that he loves interacting with young people as he learns many new things. Kumar Kinshuk advises aspiring writers to keep writing and never stop trying new things.
Check out the whole conversation with Kumar Kinshuk on our YouTube Channel.