Criticspace: Soham, my first question to you is about your selection of plot. How exactly you thought of writing this book The Call of Bliss?
Soham Mukherjee: To be honest I did not actively seek out a plot. These stories are about things that I contemplate or think about in general.
Criticspace: Your book contains six stories in which the stories which run on absurdum and abstractness. Where did the inspiration come from in writing and combining these 2 themes?
Soham Mukherjee:The world we are living in is absurd isn’t it? Nothing ever seems to have any logic or sense. Bad things happen to good people. Good things happen to bad people. But most of us live our lives somewhere in between good and bad. We feel like nobody ever gets what they deserve. That’s where the abstraction comes in. I always try to forget about logic altogether. This makes it easier to deal with things and to write better stories.
Criticspace: What kind of extensive background on human feelings and minds have you done in writing the stories?
Soham Mukherjee: A lot of it comes from reading; the rest I took from the experiences of friends and acquaintances. My writing style depends heavily on what I am or have been reading. I am also quite perceptive and this allows me to latch on to stories and plots that might be found even in simple overheard conversations on the street.
Criticspace: Which of the characters was the most difficult to develop? Why do you think the water fountain could do the justice?
Soham Mukherjee: None, actually. That’s the beauty of short story writing. You are only representing snippets from the lives of the characters. And the best part is all of the protagonists have some part of me in them. Hence, I did not actually need to develop them at all.
Criticspace: Did you find any difficulty in mixing and matching various characters and their own back stories with the available subplots?
Soham Mukherjee:No, not at all. The characters and subplots were intimately corrected. There was in fact no need for mixing and matching.
Criticspace: Do you use story boarding or mapping processes to develop your plots and interactions, or do you go with the flow and follow your instinct?
Soham Mukherjee:I completely go with the flow. There are no technical processes involved. It would go against my style of writing.
Criticspace: Tell us something about Soham as a person. What is a normal day in your life like? What is your writing routine?
Soham Mukherjee : I am teacher. I love football. I write poetry more than prose and I read as much as possible whenever I get the time.
Criticspace: How much time do you spend on writing compared to promoting your books?
Soham Mukherjee: I have spent very little time promoting my books. I have a lot going on in my life write now and have been spending time dealing with all of that. Writing is much more important to me and I believe that if my writing is good enough my books will sell by themselves.
Criticspace: What authors have you most admired and have had an influence on you?
Soham Mukherjee: Haruki Murakami is a favourite. Salman Rushdie is another. Among writers of previous eras O. Henry, Mark Twain and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle are only a few that I admire. It’s really hard to pinpoint any authors. I take whatever I can from the books I read. There’s nothing specific that I can tell you.
Criticspace: Are you working on any new project? Can you give us some insights?
Soham Mukherjee: I am working on two novels. But they have stalled for a bit. Other things have taken precedence over them. But I’ll get back to them very soon and see if I can finish them.
Few words to your readers.
Soham Mukherjee: I hope you enjoy the stories. My aim has been to try and represent feelings that are common to us. I sincerely hope you are able to identify with some of the characters. Most of all, thank you for reading.
At the end, many thanks for your time and answering the questions Soham. I wish you all the best for your book and also the coming ones!