BENGALURU : Yesterday’s Ghosts has all the elements to keep readers hooked, says Nikhil Pradhan. The 35-year-old Bengaluru-based advertising professional, who hails from Gangtok, tells us more about his second work (HarperCollins, `299), and the web series that his first book is being turned into:
What made you go for a espionage-horror story for your second book?
Yesterday’s Ghosts also brings together elements from military thrillers and classic mysteries. In my opinion, these two genres are responsible for most of the ‘unputdownable’ books out there. I wanted Yesterday’s Ghosts to be similar. With this book, I’ve tried to take the twists and turns of espionage thrillers and meld it with the sheer terror and claustrophobia of the horror genre.
What kind of research went into the book?
While I didn’t focus on extensive research before I began to write, I used online search whenever I felt that factual accuracy could aid the plot. Researching the book led me to dive into topics like the IPKF’s operations in Sri Lanka in the 1980s, tradecraft employed in signals intelligence, and the mystery surrounding numbers stations.
Your first book, Cold Truth, is being turned into a web series...
I was lucky to be approached by Razorblade Enterprise, a Mumbai-based production company, a few months after Cold Truth released. Since then, it’s been a steady yet exciting process to work with them to turn the book into something that can hit screens. Thanks to this partnership, I’ve been able to interact with global creative minds from the entertainment industry. Currently, Razorblade is co-partnering with Radical Media, one of Hollywood’s top media companies, for the web series.
Yesterday’s Ghosts has all the components to make to the big screen. Is that in the offing?
Yes! A book-to-screen agency is working with my publishers to pitch Yesterday’s Ghosts to studios and production houses. I hope to have an update on that soon.
What do you think about the kind of literature that readers are inclined towards now?
In the hours I’ve spent in bookshops like Blossoms and Bookworm, I’ve come across every kind of reader – from comic geeks and Tolkien buffs to management book connoisseurs and literary fiction fans. So I don’t really think that readers are biased towards any specific kind of literature.
Did you always want to be a writer?
Absolutely. I wrote my first book (a Hardy Boys knock-off) when I was about 10 years old, and haven’t really stopped writing since. As a result, I’ve collected plenty of rejection letters from publishers, unpublished short stories and novellas, and copious amounts of story ideas and notes.
You belong to Gangtok. What brought you to Bengaluru?
I was born in Gangtok, but have spent most of my life in various parts of the country. I moved to Bengaluru in 2008 and apart from a 3-year stint in Noida, I’ve lived here for most of my adult life. I love the city for its kind weather, kinder people, and the fact that its nightlife is more temperate than either Mumbai or Delhi. Plus, the beer is awesome. There’s no city, apart from Gangtok, that I’d rather live in.