Ahmed Faiyaz, a chartered accountant and management consultant by accident, a civil servant by day and a writer by night recently launched his book Scammed in the city. The author began his stint with writing when he became the editor of a fortnightly business journal for management students.
His book is about the life Hitesh Shah, who though has a coveted job in a top accounting firm, lives a miserable life. Labeled a nerd by colleagues, ignored by women and rebuked by parents, Shah cannot resist when offered a lucrative job as the CEO of an off shoot of the failing automobile company, Supreme Motors. Shah’s drive and quest for success helps turn the. However, as his cursed luck would have it, he is soon on the run from the law — allegedly as the perpetrator of a financial scam and accused of defrauding thousands of investors! With his back against the wall, and growing public and media opinion against him, will Shah come out of the mess he finds himself in?
City Express chats up with Faiyaz about the book, the idea that caught his fancy and his inspirations.
How did you arrive with a title like ‘Scammed’ for the book?
When I began writing it, this was titled as Confessions of a Confused Accountant, but given the number of characters scaming others, and given the number of people getting scammed by what these characters get up to, Scammed emerged as a title of choice. Its just an idea that came to me after the book was written and we felt why not.
Who has been your inspiration as far as writing is concerned?
I have a lot of respect and I admire the works of Charles Dickens, F Scott Fitzgerald, Haruki Murakami, Sankar, Premchand, Stephen King and John Grisham, among many others. These people are master storytellers, and have a great amount of conviction and love for what they’ve done.
Why come out with this book now when the much hyped recession is a story of past?
Scammed is not set in a recessionary environment and does not deal with the recession or growth slow down in the past. It’s about today, and about a the emergence of a company in the new economy which is built by those with a dubious past and with money that can’t be traced back to them. Its also a personal journey in some sense, a youngster’s ambition and frustrations and where that takes him in life.
Whats your ultimate object with this book?
The objective is to have our reading audience enjoy the book. Its a simple, entertaining and breezy read, and with its plot its a lot different from what is seen on bookshelves. The audience needs variety, and they are looking for different perspectives.
Will we see more of the writer in you in future too?
Hopefully a lot more. I have a novel called ‘Bestseller’ coming up, while there is another novella called ‘The Graveyard Shift’. I have a few stories in the just released ‘Urban Shots - Bright Lights’ and I’ve edited and contributed to ‘Urban Shots - Crossroads’.
When is the time you decided to come up with this book?
Its an idea that came to my head reading about investor scams in a Bangalore newspaper. I realised that youngsters, given their ambition and the quest to grow and succeed quickly in life, could easily be lured into traps and manipulated to do things that they cannot fully stand by.