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Q&A: Vikram Balagopal

Published: 08th June 2014 06:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 07th June 2014 11:07 AM   |  A+A-

Why did you chose to tell your story as a graphic novel?

I think visually. I was trained as a film-maker. When I write it is usually the interpretation of the images in my head. So this was just a way of bypassing this whole translation into text when I did a graphic novel.

Was it easy to get published?

No. Because it is a graphic novel, people are hesitant to sign on. But once they read the story they get enthusiastic about it. There were hurdles but I relied on the strength of the story and I think that worked. 

You said earlier that bringing out this book was like an odyssey for you. What was the journey like?

As I was trained as a film-maker, the world of graphic novels was completely alien to me. So when I started I was wondering—so what’s the first step? Do you first do the whole script and then start drawing or do you start drawing automatically. Also, drawing the pictures took a lot of time. As I am not a trained artist, each frame was a challenge to me and that was what I loved. I approached a publisher after the book was done. So I didn’t have to do any convincing of ‘imagine what it will be like’. I was like here—read it, you’ll like it.

In your opinion, what is missing from the graphic novel scene in India?

Over the past 15 years, we have been reading graphic novels from outside India and they’ve been made into movies. So now they’re accepted. Lots of artists who aren’t eloquent realise they can tell their stories through graphic novels. But when I say lots, compared to other countries, it is still a very small number. But it’s happening. Young people in their 20s and 30s are buying comic books and graphic novels. I think more people will take up this genre.



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