Dr. Rajeev Pundir is an author of Even God Does Not Know

Here is how he answered our questions.

1.How does an idea come for a story to you?

You see, I’m a medical practitioner and people come to me from all walks of life for their treatment. And while discussing about their disease, they open up before me almost about everything about their life pertaining to their private and personal to family problems and the pains and sorrows related to them. Some issues certainly move me to write. Moreover, I find myself a keen observer of the incidents happening in our society on day-to-day basis. Any issue, which I find unique to be told as a story compels me to write.

2.At what age did you start writing?

Well, I started writing right from the age of sixteen. That writing was limited to my diary only. I would write small paragraphs and poems. During my college days I would send my write-ups in various magazines and newspapers but failed to get publish. Yet, I continued scribbling my ideas in my diary.

3.Is this your first book?

No. Actually my first book is in Hindi – Saat Paheliyan, a collection of seven stories published by Delhi Pustak Sadan in 2010. Later I wrote Life On The Edge in English which I divided into two parts namely Son Of A Flying Sparrow, published by Author’s Ink Publication, Rohtak and Life On The Edge coming soon by the same publishing house. That way, Even God Does Not Know! is my third book published first by Blackbuck Publications, New Delhi, and now published by Author’s Ink Publication as second edition.

4.What is the story in ‘Even God Does Not Know!’ about?

This is a story of three classmates Amar, Akbar and Rekha. Where Akbar and Rekha fall in love, Amar endures a secret crush for Rekha for four years during college days. Coincidentally, all the three get placed in the same company Aricent. Consequently a love triangle builds up. However Akbar and Rekha are committed to each other, a sudden mishap in Akbar’s family compels him to marry elsewhere. Amar cashes this golden opportunity and proposes Rekha to marry her. Rekha, already disheartened, and knowing well Amar’s crush for her, first discourages him, but when he doesn’t, she asks him to marry within a week to discourage him further. To her amazement, he becomes ready and they get married.

It’s not easy to digest if you know about the affair of your wife in the past with your best friend. And Amar fails to come out of this hangover which results into a grave accident. This accident proves fatal not only to Amar, but to his family as a whole and Akbar’s family as well culminating into more serious incidents.

This is the story of love, crush, obsession, greed, hate and skepticism and how they can ruin one’s life if not dealt with calm and poise.

5.Why did you name your book as ‘Even God Does Not Know!’?

A very relevant question. Actually, a book’s cover and the title tell about the story contained into it. Since this story has some incidents like premonitions and telepathy which cannot be explained on any parameter and the use of a phrase in Hindi that the character of a woman and fate of a man are not known even to god – hence the title – Even God Does Not Know!

6.Which is your favorite character from this book?

O, it’s a difficult question! It’s like asking- which of your children you like most? Amar as a silent lover, Akbar’s sacrifice for his parents’ will and Rekha as a committed wife – all are practical and strive for their families. So I cannot pick and choose. Well, the readers and the reviewers have liked the character of Amar most and I would like to go with them for the sake of answering this question.

7.What do you think is more important- the words used or the feelings?

Words and feelings go hand in hand and are indispensable for each other. However, you can say a lot of things and save lot of space by meticulously selecting words to describe an emotion. For example, words like smile, snigger, grimace, grin, scoff, scowl, wink, etc. say a lot of things about our feelings.

8.If a favorite character of your favorite book comes alive in front of you, what would you say?

I’ll say a big thank you to them for playing a perfect role in the story and for making my book a compelling read. I cannot ask them – why did you do this or that? You know, whatever they’ve done, it’s all for the sake of the story as directed by me and if there’re flaws in their character, that’s also because of me simply because I couldn’t portray their whole persona to the perfection.

9.Is there a particular time of the day when you write your ideas? When?

No. Usually I write when I am in my clinic. During my routine medical practice, whenever I get a free space, I open my diary kept on my table, always waiting and inviting me to write. Sometimes I don’t get enough time even for months together to write even a single word.

10.Just like you are an inspiration to others, who is/are your inspiration?

I don’t know whether I’m an inspiration for others but for me it’s Premchand. I wonder that he wrote that much without having even the basic facilities which we’ve nowadays. Perhaps I could have failed had I been subjected to those constrained and straitened conditions. What a man he was!!

11.What do you consider to be your biggest accomplishment?

My biggest accomplishment I consider is that people have started to recognize me as a writer. You see, when not only readers praise your work, but the upcoming writers show their trust in you and seek some guidance from you, you feel happy, confident and contented. And that ‘s what I’ve achieved during the span of last ten years as a writer.

12.They say, “Nobody can judge you, as much as you yourself can.” Where do you see yourself 10 years from now?

Well, I’m a clinician primarily and I write out of my hobby. I will continue to write and I would like see at least ten more books from my pen within ten years. Nothing more. Nothing less.

13.What would you do if you weren’t into writing?

See, I’m a storyteller and we can tell a story in various mediums. During my college days I would act in plays but due to my professional commitments I couldn’t continue that. Another medium I’m comfortable with is painting which I would’ve adopted as a wonderful creative pastime in the absence of writing.

14.How do you react to the reviews that you get about your writing from your readers?

Generally they are good and inspire me to write more. They like the stories and the way I tell.

15.Which is your favorite fictional character?

See, I’m not a big reader. Neither I stick to one author. So I cannot pinpoint one out of novels. Any character who’s truthful to himself/herself and has a depth of thinking and behaving is always my favorite.

16.Who is your favorite author?

Well, from the past, it’s Munshi Premchand, Amrita Pritam, Shivani and Saadat Hasan Manto had been my favorite. Off late I met a wonderful writer Ranjana Bajpai who writes in Hindi. Gaurav Sharma and Neil D’Silva are my contemporary writers and I like their writings and storytelling.

17.List any 3 books that you would recommend to our readers.

Love@Airforce By Gaurav Sharma, Maya’s New Husband By Neil D’Silva and God Father By Mario Pujo in English.

18.Is there one specific subject you would never write about? What would that be?

Historical fiction which I think is out of my reach and interest both.

19.Which is your favorite genre? Why?

General fiction is my cup of tea. This is the only genre where one can tell the stories of life, primarily, in the backdrop of various emotions like love, hate, sympathy, heartbreak, greed, anger, revenge, adultery, and almost anything related to our lives.

20.Which genre, according to you, is the most difficult to write?

For me, it’s historical fiction. Actually it demands a lot of extensive research which I dislike ever.

21.Are you working on your next? What is it about?

Yes, I’m working on the sequel of Song Of A Flying Sparrow entitled as Life On The Edge. Manuscript of another novel is in progress – A Tracker And The Heart Stealer. E-book of Wedding Vows will be coming soon. In Hindi, Samandar and Saat Paheliyan will see the light till the end of this year hopefully. Simultaneously, I’m working on a film script – 8th Floor which is a thriller and may get a home anytime soon.

22.What is your message to other budding poets/writers?

My message to my young friend-writers and poets is – gather enough experience of life as deep as you can, have patience, and don’t jump into publishing with your shallow or stereotypical story, just for the sake of getting published. For presenting something unique and new, one has to understand life from various perspectives which needs time, patience perseverance and all.

Although – keep writing unabatedly.

All the best!!

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