'Chetan Bhagat wrote his book after becoming rich. I am writing to become rich!'
Born and bred in a small town in Jharkhand, this bilingual author has gained the acclaim of taking comedy to a different level with the realease of his second satirical comedy, Ishqiyapa: To hell with love. Pankaj Dubey says that his book is a dark tale of love in the time of globalisation in which nothing is what it seems and no character is above evil. The scriptwriter shares his creative process with Rajeshwari Swaminathan
Was this always the plan? To becoming a bestselling author
The idea throughout was to be rich and famous. This is why I did not appear for civil services, as the salary is painstakingly low for honest officers. I wanted to come about as an honest person in whatever I do and had no specific aim but communication was always my forte.
Where did it all begin?
I was never a voracious reader but my dad was a professor in college, so journalism was an obvious career option.Hailing from a small town, the experience I had garnered from all the places I had been to, motivated me to write ‘What a loser’, my first book.
After televison, was filmdom an obvious option?
By the time I was at the peak of my television journalism career, I realised the make up and mockery associated with TV journalism and films was the only media which was unexplored. This is when I decided to begin curating film festivals and also intiated Sadak Chaap Film Festival for underprivileged children, for which I was awared the 2010 Youth Icon Award for Social Entrepreneurship by A P J Abdul Kalam. After curating about fifty film festivals I moved to Bombay in January 2012, where I got the opportunity to be associated with movies like Ghanchakkr and Chauranga. By next year I am expecting the realease of the movie adaptation of What A Loser.
Why do you write in two languages?
Like in my last book, Ishqiyapa comes out in Hindi and English at the same time. This kind of writing helps tap into the two distinct markets, and also there is no better way to promote Hindi than to do it through English.
You're from a small town. What are your thoughts on the world around us today?
The loss of solidarity in small towns as well as metro cities is worrisome. The virtual media has penetrated deeper into the cities and one has access to all kinds of information in the virtual world. In the absence of the judgement power, such overexposure leads to cultural chaos.
Your take on writers who follow the same line of writing?
Chetan Bhagat is the one who comes to my mind and I am quite influenced by his success in marketing and promoting books. I write to encourage and then to bring the reader in that universe. While Bhagat wrote the book after becoming rich, I am writing the book to become rich
What's cooking with 'To Hell With Love'?
The love story of Lallan Jha, the wannabe entrepreneur and Sweety Pandey, the wannabe film-star, travels from Laloo-era Bihar to city-of-dreams Bombay. There is a marked difference between the pre-1991 and post-1991 love, and the aim is to draw it out while giving the readers a fun time. Ishqiyapa, is all about how you lose control in love.
A few of them have actually been flicked from real life situations. My characters are the off spring of my imagination.