About the Author:
Sumana Bhattacharya is a PR practitioner by profession and a writer by passion. Though her vocation is more about communication strategies, literature has always been her first love. Her style is simple; she likes to write about things she feels deeply about. In her writings, she sometimes draws from her experiences of having grown up in a small town, Agartala. Sumana runs a blog, The Retro Feeling, and writes short stories. Poetry happened by accident. She enjoys the medium for the subtlety and the depth it offers to her emotions. She is an ardent reader of poetry, fiction and mythology.
Tell us about the idea behind the book?
I never considered myself to be a poet. But over a period, certain emotions of love and heartbreak, and nostalgia found expression in poems. Like all writers I wanted to share these poems with a wider audience, therefore my first book – Love & Longings.
I am a spontaneous writer and in some ways these poems are very personal to me. I hope the readers feel what I felt when I wrote these poems.
Your favourite poem from the book?
Every poem in the book is special to me for some reason or another. But if I were to pick one it would be December Rains.
How much time did it take in the process of writing?
I wasn’t really planning a book when I started these poems. These poems happened over a period of a year. Whenever an emotion touched me, be it of love or loss, it found expression in a poem. It took me about a month to put these poems together in a book
What did the process of writing this book teach you?
Writing can be liberating; writing can give you clarity. No matter how painful the experience maybe, a poem captures the beauty and the tenderness of the moment. The process of writing has taught me to give meaningful expression to my emotions. It has taught me to be guarded and at the same time to share my feelings with a larger audience.
What inspired you to write this book?
I love writing. I have always dreamt of publishing a book. Love & Longings gives shape to that dream.
5 books one must read in a lifetime
I am a voracious reader and I could share a long list. However my top 5 must reads would be:
- Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
- One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
- Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen
- Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
- The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
And of course the Romantic poets – Wordsworth, Shelley, Keats and Browning
A book that had an impact on you, which helped you in writing this one?
I would say the English romantic poets Wordsworth, Shelley, Keats and Browning. I was a student of literature and read a lot of romantic poetry while in college. Perhaps that helped me shape this book.
Tell us about your publishing journey in 5 words.
Challenging, intimidating and immensely satisfying
Tell us about your plans? Planning a new book?
I am planning a collection of short stories next. I also plan write a book about my grandfather Shri Dakshina Ranjan Bhattacharjee. He was a great man involved in the Swadeshi movement and migrant rehabilitation after the partition of Bengal. I plan to capture his legacy and pay tribute to him through this book.
What is a literary success for you?
For me it’s all about reaching out to the readers. As long as readers can connect with me and enjoy reading what I write I will consider myself successful.
A message for all the readers.
Read, for books can ignite your imagination and take you to places that you might otherwise never visit.