Interview with Kanika Dhillon, author of The Dance of Durga
Kanika Dhillon’s The Dance of Durga was reviewed by The Good Book Corner on 1/6/2016. https://thegoodbookcorner.com/2016/06/01/the-dance-of-durga-by-kanika-dhillion/
TGBC got in touch with Kanika, to know more about The Dance of Durga.
1. What inspired this book?
KD: The germ of this book originated from the idea of exploring faith- what happens when it is shattered and manipulated. The journey of a young girl from a passionate devotee to a vengeful spiritual guru excited me. The story invites a discussion on the quintessential question – do you know what you are really made of? The extent you can go and push yourself, can you surprise yourself with your own vengeance and passion? And when you are challenged by Fate – Destiny – God- can you really hold your own?
2. The theme is a bit controversial. What sorts of a reaction has it generated from your first readers and editors?
KD: It is controversial only if we see it and evaluate through a religious prism. Spirituality, personal faith and personal vengeance is not controversial. The novel is about an intimate journey that defines my protagonist. And we should consume the story by dropping our own judgements and notions. Rajjo has her own learning and her own path, her own mistakes and blunders- we should not invite the storms that my protagonist endures in our own lives and colour them with a general judgement.
3. The narrative is very realistic. Given your background in screenwriting, do you write with the aim of having the story turned into a film, drama or television show? How has screenwriting helped you?
KD: I don’t write a novel with the aim of getting it adapted into a film because I am a screenwriter and I have that medium available to me. Between the covers of my book is where I have set up my canvas to write the story and I enjoy it thoroughly.
At al later stage if someone wants to adapt the novel for the screen, yes why not.But while I am writing the novel that is not the aim.
Screenwriting has helped me to control my thoughts and pace the story. While writing novel chapters one can get carried away since you have a large canvas and the liberty to expound on your thought. In screenplay – brevity and editing is a very inherent skill, maintaining pace and moving the plot goes hand in hand while you are conveying your emotion. That training is good for me when I sit down to write my chapters – I strive not to get lost in the world I create.
4. What next- films and books?
KD: Currently I have two films in various stages of pre production and development. Man Marziyan – produced by Anand L Rai and an untitled project with UTV. I have just finished writing a thriller and would be able to share the details of the project in some time.
As far as my next book is concerned, I shall wait for a couple of months for my mind to settle as Rajjo and Durga were dominating that space for over two years, and then start my discovery of another world, story and characters!