Q1. Tell us something about your book ‘Collection of Chaos’? How would you introduce it to a potential reader?
‘Collection of Chaos’ is a journey inside the poet's mind, her life and all that surrounds it. Each poem has emerged from the complex interactions of heart and mind, the struggles of daily life and a search for oneself beneath all the role playing. The book wasn't conceived as a whole but it's a patchwork quilt of poems.
It isn't just the product of disciplined hard work and learning with an open mind but also of great mentorship. They say that when the student is ready, the master appears and I have been blessed to find teachers who not only helped me evolve but also stood by me when everyone including myself had given up on me. They had a profound impact on me as a writer and as a person. Sometimes you need more than your own power to make things happen. This book could not have happened without the support, encouragement and friendship that made me trust those people implicitly. An artistic evolution is a dream work and each dream work is a team work.
Q2. When was it that you found your call in writing?
We are all story tellers. Sometimes we know it, sometimes we don't. Writing is a vital tool in healing, in connecting with oneself and others. I began serious writing some seven or eight years back when a friend on a social network group encouraged me to showcase some of my writing online. Until then I wove my stories and poems either in my mind or on pieces of paper. The exposure to internet opened up the world to me and allowed me to learn things I would otherwise have known little about. It was when I read and interacted with poets and writers from across the world that the urge to seriously write actually began to emerge. You may find it amusing that my actual apprenticeship began with these virtual people (who later became good friends). It is through them I found my calling. Blogging was an immense help in allowing me to connect with fellow writers and learn from their constructive comments. It has been five years since I started my blog and it has been a wonderful platform from which to offer my work to the readers.
Q3. For a debut writer getting published is not usually easy. What kind of issues did you face?
Yes, for a debut writer getting published is not easy but I have been fortunate. There are few people who are prepared to help you realize your potential and achieve one of your biggest dreams. I found a mentor who not just helped me break my mental barriers but also gave me the opportunity to publish them so you can all read them. I owe the existence of this book to James Goddard, my mentor, editor and publisher and also Kris Saknussemm who helped me take the first steps in learning and has been the wind beneath my wings. Nurturing is a tough job. It takes absolute selflessness, a lot of patient understanding and tough love. I found them all including a warm friendship in him.
Q4. If you could be one author (someone other than yourself, of course) who would you like to be?
I don't think I would want to be any other author in particular. I would rather learn from reading a variety of authors and develop my own style.
Q5. You have got published earlier as well. Please familiarize your readers with your previous works.
Yes, I have been published online and in print previously.
Some of my poems and stories have been part of the famed Chicken Soup For Indian Romantic Soul (Westland), Ripples- An anthology of short stories by Indian women writers, Posy of Poetry- A poetry anthology from Guntur national poetry festival.
Online my works have appeared in Le Zaporogue,
Q6. Coming back to your book, what kind of reactions have you received from it? And what next?
I've received a few positive initial responses and a mini review but it's still too early to say what the longer term reaction would be.
[Readers’ reactions here - http://tikulicious.wordpress.com/2014/01/30/collection-of-chaos-my-poetry-book-and-first-mini-review/]
What next ?
To continue evolving as a writer. A book of short stories perhaps. Let's see.
Brought up in Delhi in a family of liberal educationists Tikuli is a mother of two sons. She is also a blogger and author. Some of her short stories and poems have appeared in print and in online journals and literary magazines including Le Zaparougue, MiCROW 8, Trobadour 21, The Smoking Book (Poets Wears Prada Press, US), The Enchanting Verses Literary Review, Mnemosyne Literary Journal, Women's Web. She blogs at tikulicious.wordpress.com. Some of her print publications include poems in Guntur National Poetry Festival Anthology and much acclaimed Chicken Soup For The Indian Romantic Soul. Her work has also been featured on websites related to gender issues and child sexual abuse. She blog at tikulicious.wordpress.com