Penguin is like a dream publication house for almost everyone and here is Megha Rao who became the youngest author to bag two books deal with the house. She is lively and feels that her humour isn’t acceptable to most people because it has got the terrible timing. Read more about her life in this Chat with the author as she shares her experiences with BananiVista.
BV: At what age did you feel that you are pretty good at literature?
Megha: Six! I wrote a comic book on a dog prince but my spelling was terrible.
Poetry happened in the second year of college when I got my heart broken and I turned to it.
BV: What do you love writing more?
Megha: Poetry. I didn’t like it initially. In college, I read Sylvia Plath and fell in love. Audre Lorde is my favourite. Besides, I don’t follow any traditional conventions. Poetry has no limits and no boundaries; it has a heart and a meaning.
BV: Favourite writing genre and why?
Megha: I adore horror as I grew up listening to horror stories. Moreover, I’ve heard from my grandfather that his dad was a black magician! I secretly think I’m a witch; a sorceress! I love scaring people and often scared my cousins by chasing them with my hair over my face till they would lock themselves in the bathroom.
BV: You love travelling! Favourite place?
Megha: Barcelona. It is warm and pretty. The people are kind and friendly. Moreover, beautiful places, good food and shopping were fun there.
BV: How did it feel being the youngest author to bag a 2 book-deal with Penguin?
Megha: I think they’ve got a younger author now.
It was funny at Penguin Random House cocktail party when Ravinder Singh asked me, ‘Are you old enough to drink?’ though I was nineteen. I was in awe of everything. I was bad at socializing because I couldn’t find anyone of my age.
However, it was different in college. It was fun to watch because people behaved differently. Some of them were really sweet, while others weren’t too thrilled. Besides, you cannot expect everyone to be happy for you. But it felt good because I was learning fast.
BV: How do you define your personality?
Megha: Savage and sensitive!
BV: Which genre you haven’t tried and want to try?
Megha: Satire! I would love to.
BV: Your plans for the next book? Have you decided your plot?
Megha: It is about a well. The well in my grandfather’s house in Kottarakkara inspired me. The plot is in my head and I’ve written most of it, but it requires extensive editing. My agent, Anuj Bahri, will decide what to do with it.
BV: People often take time to follow their heart. What is your take on this?
Megha: People need to know that it is not wrong to be a dreamer. Moreover, success isn’t counted by how much money you make, it is about happiness. You may have your head in the clouds but your feet must be on the ground.