Hey there word nerds! Today, we’re doing another one of our live-from-a-conference interviews, this time from RWA annual conference, where I have the pleasure of interviewing Nisha Sharma.
But first, some backstory. The RWA conference is the big event that the Romance Writers of America put on each year. I had the pleasure of speaking at this event a few years ago in San Diego, and this year because it’s back in New York, I’m delighted to be attending it once again.
My guest for this episode, is Nisha Sharma, whose YA novel, My So-Called Bollywood Life, has just won the RITA award (i.e., one of the top awards for romance writing) for best young adult romance. Nisha is also the author of the adult contemporary romance The Takeover Effect.
Now, because I can’t resist a good YA story, and because it’s been nominated for a RITA, our discussion focuses particularly on My So-Called Bollywood Life. But before we get to the interview, let me tell you a little more about our guest.
Nisha’s writing has been praised in NPR, Cosmopolitan, Teen Vogue, Buzzfeed, Hypable and more.
She credits her father for her multiple graduate degrees, and her mother for her love of Shah Rukh Khan and Jane Austen. She lives in New Jersey with her Alaskan husband, her cat Lizzie Bennett and her dog Nancey Drew.
In this episode Nisha and I discuss:
- The inspiration behind My So-Called Bollywood Life
- How minor characters influence and develop the main character
- Building a real world as opposed to a fantasy world
- How Bollywood structure conventions influenced the book
- Using blog posts at the beginning of each chapter as an anchor for writing
- The similarities between Jane Austen and Bollywood
Plus, her #1 tip for writers.
About the Author
Nisha Sharma is the author of the YA novel My So-Called Bollywood Life, and the adult contemporary romance The Takeover Effect.
Her writing has been praised in NPR, Cosmopolitan, Teen Vogue, Buzzfeed, Hypable and more.
Nisha credits her father for her multiple graduate degrees, and her mother for her love of Shah Rukh Khan and Jane Austen. She lives in New Jersey with her Alaskan husband, her cat Lizzie Bennett and her dog Nancey Drew. You can find her online at nisha-sharma.com or on Twitter and Instagram.
The romance of Stephanie Perkins meets the quirk of Maureen Johnson, then gets a Bollywood twist in this fate-filled debut that takes the future into its own hands.
Winnie Mehta was never really convinced that Raj was her soul mate, but their love was written in the stars. Literally, a pandit predicted Winnie would find the love of her life before her eighteenth birthday, and Raj meets all the qualifications. Which is why Winnie is shocked when she returns from her summer at film camp to find her boyfriend of three years hooking up with Jenny Dickens. As a self-proclaimed Bollywood expert, Winnie knows this is not how her perfect ending is scripted.
Then there’s Dev, a fellow film geek and one of the few people Winnie can count on. Dev is smart and charming, and he challenges Winnie to look beyond her horoscope and find someone she’d pick for herself. But does falling for Dev mean giving up on her prophecy and her chance to live happily ever after? To find her perfect ending, Winnie will need a little bit of help from fate, family, and of course, a Bollywood movie star.
Hemdeep Singh knows exactly what he wants. With his intelligence and determination, he has what it takes to build his own legacy away from Bharat, Inc. and the empire his father created. But when his brother calls him home, Hem puts his dreams on hold once again to help save the company he walked away from. That’s when he encounters the devastating Mina Kohli in the Bharat boardroom, and he realizes he’s in for more than he had bargained.
Mina will do whatever it takes to recover control of her mother’s law firm, even if it means agreeing to an arranged marriage. Her newest case assignment is to assist Bharat in the midst of a potential takeover. It could be the key to finally achieving her goal while preventing her marriage to a man she doesn’t love—as long as her explosive attraction to Hem doesn’t get in the way.
As Mina and Hem work to save Bharat, they not only uncover secrets that could threaten the existence of the company, but they also learn that in a winner-takes-all game, love always comes out on top.
If you decide to check out the book, we hope you’ll do so via the above Amazon affiliate links, where if you choose to purchase via the link DIY MFA gets a referral fee at no cost to you. As always, thank you for supporting DIY MFA!
(Right-click to download.)
If you liked this episode…
Also, remember that sharing is caring so if you know anyone who might enjoy this podcast, please tell them about it or leave us a review so other listeners will want to check it out.
Until next week, keep writing and keep being awesome!