Allow me to introduce Neeti Nigam Keswani, the author of Live Your Dreams – Be You, which is a nice read. You can read our detailed reviews for the book at:
We are glad to have a conversation with you. As your book “Live Your Dreams – Be You” is getting both commercial success and critical acclaim both, obviously you are enjoying it. Can you share your feelings?
Thank you so much for your kind words and the invite for this Author Interview.Ever since the book has been published, I have been on an emotional rollercoaster. It has been an exhilarating experience…very liberating. I say that because Live Your Dreams has indeed made me live my dreams. I always wanted to pen down this inspirational story that every woman could relate to but being able to become an Amazon Bestseller within a month, just means that the book is resonating well with the souls of many and I am so pleased!
I am a passionate writer by choice and an HR specialist by profession. I have worked in Senior HR Sales and Consulting roles with companies like Aon Hewitt, GE, to name a few. Presentations, Crunching numbers, and Consultative training has been part of my portfolio for almost 15 years. I have always received accolades for being creative, result orientated and focused.
The birth of my son made me ask certain crucial questions like: What is my top priority: my career? family? I wanted to be realistic- to be there for my baby and wanted to work in a more meaningful and powerful way.
It was the decision at that time that changed my lens for viewing life and added vibrancy to it. So then, I decided to pursue writing. Over the last seven years, I have taken various projects in the academic arena, corporate communications, and HR Learning and Development for various clients in UK, USA, and India.
Finally, I could not resist the urge to pen down a book…A book that had been sitting in my heart for a couple of years. My love for writing convinced me to foray into the world of contemporary fiction and Inspirational writing.
When I am not writing, then I love reading books, listening to soulful music, dance and traveling to wonderful destinations.
This book is a figment of my imagination and creative instincts. I have tried to put words to many emotions and feelings that a woman may go through…at various stages in her life be it college going, married women or career-minded women with kids.
Yet people, who know me personally, can find reflections of me and my thought process when Rhea Jaiswal (main protagonist) goes through varied transformations in her life.
This book is an ode to inspiration and following your passions no matter where you are, whatever stage in life.
For me, inspiration happens in a flick of a second, especially when I am outdoors. Majority of this book has been penned in the cafes of London. There are bits and bobs in the book talking about the exquisite weather, and fashion streets of London as Rhea explores and meets her creative side…
Then, there is one particular scene where Rhea is doing an exquisite sketch in a park and the editor of Invogue happens to see her craft the masterpiece. So, that bit…I got inspired when I was in Bryant park, Manhattan…it’s a quaint park surrounded by beautiful buildings…big brands…just the vibrancy of the people around at lunch hour got me inspired. Rhea in this scene captures vibrancy of fashion hues on four girls. When I was in this park, fashion was spelt across women, casually soaking in the sun and enjoying their time in the park.
As an Author, I just have to witness the scene once and in the spur of the moment, when I am writing, I tend to give it the shape that I want to.
I love traveling, especially exploring new cities and cultures. This might be quite evident to you after reading Live Your Dreams Book. I have been deeply influenced by the working culture in Gurgaon and London, and somewhere it has reflected in my writings. Apart from the work culture, the general thought process and local events have helped mold the story that I wanted to create.
London has been the melting pot of various cultures and now Gurgaon is increasingly becoming one. I think my global stance on various subjects (and reflected in this book)- is mainly attributed to the travels and living in these two beautiful cities.
I guess I am a bit of both. I tend to write when I am truly inspired by a subject. But once the subject has taken form in my mind, then I consistently develop a regime of writing every single day for whatever time slotted for that piece…Or until a certain deadline is met.
Live Your Dreams- Be You: is a self-published book. I have been actively involved in all layers of publishing in a larger or smaller role. Publishing this book has been the most satisfying creative project for me and my husband. I feel Book Cover plays a major role in book sales. Hence, Book cover has been conceptualized by us and given shape by our design team. It took us quite a while to conceptualize a cover that indicates London in the background where the story is set, main protagonist Rhea Jaiswal and a strong punch line. I feel really pleased with what our design team delivered.
There are so many pieces in the book that I have absolutely devoured while penning them down. To count a few:
The introduction: which starts with a narrative and takes the reader into Rhea’s dream.
And then how she gets jolted out of her dream and goes on living a mundane life, yet keeping her aspirations intact.
Himalayan Adventure: Not only my book readers and fans, but me myself have loved this section of the book that connects you with the supreme. The adventures that unfold for Rhea and Sahil, the Mentor who guides Rhea in simple ways and the travel in the unknown terrains of Himalayas…all were mesmerizing.
Rhea’s yoga on the hill section: Although it is very subtle, there has been a message on fitness. The way Rhea does yoga, her flexibility, focus and will to do yoga on a dangerous piece of rock has been quite intriguing for me as I wrote.
Rhea’s commitment to values: In the early part of the book, Rhea goes through struggles to marry the love of her life and yet manages to keep her family bond and values high. The way I wanted to create this scene was quite delicate and I guess the experience was enthralling.
Rhea’s tryst with her passions and pursuit of fashion as an art: This is the section which is most enjoyed by all my book readers and I thoroughly enjoyed the way chapters formed within my mind. In my growing up years, I often took refuge in penning my thoughts and I guess I reflected that same passion as Rhea designed in her green diary.
I completed the entire process of book writing and publishing in 3 years. These 3 years were also the time when we relocated thrice between Gurgaon- London-Gurgaon. The biggest challenge has been to find time to write between three relocations.
Relocating takes time, energy and efforts alongside adjustments to places, people and cultures.
The second challenge has been more intrinsic. Just like other debutante authors, I have also felt that gnawing in the pit of my stomach to take the step or not. But in these times, my husband has played a role in believing in me unconditionally. He is my most avid fan and the worst critique. He has ensured that I finish the book in record time by taking avid interest in the progress of my book regularly.
To me, writing this book has been a liberating experience. It was a like a piece that I kept in the backburner and now released it. It has been a truly satisfying experience. Writing a book requires inspiration, patience, focus, and dedication.
Inspiration– finding that idea, being so inspired that you could write a book on it. Often this is the most difficult of the four.
Patience– because it takes time to write a book.
Focus– because you are dedicatedly writing about a subject, a story, a piece that needs to be sewn together.
Dedication– because writing 282 pages requires time, energy and inspiration to be in that space to write.
And I think all these have firmed up in me as I finished penning this one and I am now gearing up for the next one.
I feel proud to tell you that Live Your Dreams is a self-published book and yet has been an Amazon Bestseller since the very first month. People face lot of challenges on stiff competition, publishers and all sorts of other things, but I feel that if your story is genuine and touches some strings of readers’ hearts then it becomes that much little easier.
It has been quite a journey to self-publish and reach this level. My audience is growing every single day. I have more than 14000 followers on Facebook and growing. My twitter consists of 2000+ influencers who are senior professionals in their area who are rooting for me on every single tweet, and FaceBook post. Now I am also on Instagram.
I am now seeking representation for the book, looking out for a publisher. This is because the first 1000 copies of the book have been sold and now my book is approaching a re-run of print. I intend to make this book available to a larger audience globally.
I love inspirational reads. When I am not reading inspirational stuff, then I like reading light Contemporary fiction…stuff that tends to tickle a funny bone or result in removing all stress of the day.
Paulo Coelho and Napolean Hill.
The power of your subconscious mind by Joseph Murphy
Who will cry when you die? By Robin Sharma
I feel Ebooks are already an essential part of our reading culture and going forward, more and more people are going to shift onto e-reading if they haven’t already.
To my mind, the impact is going to be really positive as books become more and more accessible to people. There is a strong chance that ebooks become mainstream. In London and even in Gurgaon, there are schools that are shifting their curriculum online and are making children tech savvy for the bite sized assignments.
I think simple things when done collectively lead to larger results.
At our individual levels, if we could plant more trees by the roadsides- it could lead to more greenery in the city and also a better environment for future.
Wow! That would be awesome…the book does open up like the scenes from a Bollywood movie. 🙂
When the book gets to that stage, I would leave that decision with the Directors.
However, only in the case of the Mentor to Rhea Jaiswal: I feel Mohit Raina is the choice. He is the one who can deliver the role, the dialogues and the authenticity in the character with so much ease and elegance that he is the only choice.
Yes, I am very intrigued by varied cultures of the world. And very soon you will be seeing a book in a different genre… maybe catering to this aspect. Keeping everything hush hush till then.:-)
Just a Quote from my book “Live your Dreams”.
Find your story by listening to any voice that you know is truly your own.
Live Your Dreams. BE YOU.
Here are some of the quick links to purchase Live Your Dreams – Be You:
- Buy Book From Amazon India – Paperback
- Buy Book From Amazon US – Paperback
- Buy Book From Amazon UK – Paperback
- Buy Book From Amazon India – Kindle EBook
- Buy Book From Amazon US – Kindle EBook
Hope you have enjoyed the Q/A session with him. And many of your questions might be already answered. Let us know that what do you think about this Interview session? Do you want us to ask anything else to him on your behalf? Do let us know. Also, let us know which other authors you like us to interview? Do let us know your thoughts and remarks via comments below. Do not forget to share this article with your friends over various social networks via Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus and others. And yes, you may like to subscribe to our RSS feeds and follow us on various Social networks to get latest updates for the site to land right in your mail box.