A very warm welcome to anyone and everyone reading this. If you are here, chances are that you already know who I am. If you don't, let this post serve as a basic introduction to me.
My name is Chandrayan Gupta. I live in Kolkata, a city I have grown to be very comfortable with over the years. I am 19 years old, though I will be 20 later this month. I am a first-year law student at Amity University, Kolkata, and I guess now I can say that I am also a writer.
Starting this blog was... let's just say that it was a challenge for me, not least because I absolutely detest talking about myself. In conversations everywhere and with (almost) everyone, whenever the prospect arises of revealing information about myself, instead of doing what most people do and giving a straight answer, I prefer to dodge the question. It doesn't matter if it is a simple query about my life or a deeply personal question, I just never answer completely honestly, or sometimes, at all. For instance, whenever someone asks me - "What's up?" - the standard answer they receive is - "The sky." It usually elicits a chuckle or an exasperated sigh. Either way, I'm off the hook.
The second reason that I was reticent about starting this blog only arose once I'd gotten over myself and started the process - I'm not a techie. I'm not saying that computers baffle me or anything, but yeah, I'm not a techie. The complexities related to blogging took me aback quite a bit. The first time I delved into this, I almost gave up then and there. I didn't want to do this anyway, and it seemed that it wouldn't be the easiest thing in the world either, so I closed the browser window and told myself that it was not worth it. I do that sometimes. Faced with a challenge, I try to convince myself that the reward isn't that desirable anyway. So far, I haven't succeeded once.
I am eternally at war with myself, and those wars usually come down to one aspect of my personality, or rather one dilemma. I want to be known, but I also cherish complete anonymity. I want to avoid attention at all costs, but I also want to make a name for myself. I don't want people to know anything about me, but I also want to start a blog. I want to minimize my interaction with people, but I also want to be a lawyer. I don't want to attract attention to myself, but I also want my name plastered across the cover pages of books.
I remember that when I was young, maybe five or six years old, my older brother had a collection of Enid Blyton books. Famous Five, Secret Seven, the Mystery series starring Fatty and Larry and everyone else. Although we couldn't be closer now, I imagine he disliked me back then for some reason, because (among other things) he would never let me borrow them. So, I did the only thing I could - I stole them and read them when he wasn't there. And thus began one of my most treasured relationships ever - the one with the novel.
After devouring all the Famous Five books in existence (which almost always involved underground dungeons for some reason), I moved on to Blyton's other works. It seemed that almost every week, our school librarian was handing over to me a book with an almost illegible scrawl spelling "Enid Blyton" on the cover.
Then, when I was about 10, I finally tried my first adult book - The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown. The nostalgia and sense of adventure attached to that book, not to mention Brown's superlative writing skill, makes it one of my all-time favorites, despite it being widely considered inferior to his other works.
Now, I have a modestly-sized cabinet with three shelves, full of books. My favorite writers are Dan Brown, Tom Rob Smith and Frederick Forsyth. In fact, I'm currently reading Forsyth's latest book, The Fox. Need To Know by Karen Cleveland and the Cormoran Strike series by J.K. Rowling, writing under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith, are some more of my favorites.
All this is to say that ever since I was young, I have been fascinated by books and have idolized those who write them. Which is why it was such a huge thrill and a moment of pride for me when I saw my own name on the cover of a book that I'd written.
For anyone interested, it is a detective story in which a teenager with mental health issues and a private detective end up working together to determine whether the death of a television actor's son was a murder or a suicide. It is called Birth of a Duo. I've never really been good with names. It was published by the wonderful Bee Books. You can find it here. I would love it if you read it, and if you do, do let me know how (or indeed if) you liked it.
I was really nervous about writing my first blog post, but I think somehow I've done it. I am still trying to figure out what I want this blog to be. Maybe it'll be about me and my life, maybe I'll post reviews of books I read, maybe I'll post short stories I write. I don't fully know myself. Once again, I have dived head-first into something, and as always will figure it out as I go along. I would love it if you joined me. Thanks for reading, and have a great day.